Seles retires from match with tendinitis

Top seed Monica Seles dropped out midway through her semifinals match today against Julie Halard-Decugis, who will now meet second-seeded Serena Williams in the final of the Toyota Princess Cup in Tokyo.

Top seed Monica Seles dropped out midway through her semifinals match today against Julie Halard-Decugis, who will now meet second-seeded Serena Williams in the final of the Toyota Princess Cup in Tokyo.

Seles, winner of the Sydney Olympic bronze medal, lost the first set 6-4, and was leading 3-2 in the second set when she started limping at moments on the hard, cement court of Ariake Colosseum.

Following a brief court-side treatment by her trainer, Seles resumed playing but decided to retire when she was trailing 4-3.

A doctor's report said she was suffering from tendinitis in both feet.

Williams, who won the Sydney Olympic doubles gold medal with her sister Venus, ousted Czech teen-aged qualifier Daja Bedanova 6-1, 6-4.

Halard Decugis, of France, will also play Sunday for the doubles title. She and Japan's Ai Sugiyama, top-seeded after winning the U.S. Open title, reached the final with a 6-1, 7-5 victory over Tathiana Garbin of Italy and Janette Husarova of Slovakia.

The pair, top-ranked in the world, take on Nana Miyagi of Japan and Paola Suarez of Argentina, who beat fourth-seeded Jelena Dokic of Australia and American Corina Morariu 5-7, 7-5, 6-3.

In the singles action, Halard-Decugis built an early lead and went on to take first set without much problem, with Seles moving somewhat slower than usual.

"I didn't notice she was hurt," said Halard-Decugis, seeded fourth and ranked No. 19. "I was just trying hard to focus on my own game."

"But, if I hadn't played as well as I did today, she still could have won in two sets to reach the final," she said.

Seles said she now plans to have some treatment and rest before competing in Austria's Linz. "I'm going to Europe and have a week off getting treatment and rest," she said. "If it is still painful a week from today, I'll pull out. If not, I'll go on playing."

In her eight appearances at Toyota Princess, Seles has won the title five times, and was the runner-up last year to Lindsay Davenport, who is sitting out the tournament due to an injury to her left foot that she suffered while practicing for her second round in the Olympics.

Williams, ranked eighth, wasn't serving well but bothered her 17-year-old opponent throughout with some big ground shots, including whizzing forehands, sharp-shooting down the line and double-fisted backhand cross court.

"I couldn't get my first serve in the whole match, but I hung in there with my ground strokes," said Williams, the 1999 U.S. Open champion. "When you're not serving well, it's nice to have something like that to fall back on."

Williams is making her debut in Toyota Princess. She said she once considered skipping the event because of her tight schedule and the tournament's proximity to the U.S. Open and the Olympics.

"But everyone has welcomed me with open arms here, and I wouldn't have missed it for the world," she said.

New Articles
tvDownton Abbey Christmas special
Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
tvOur review of the Doctor Who Christmas Special
News
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: Stanley Tucci, Sophie Grabol and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
tvSo Sky Atlantic arrived in Iceland to film their new and supposedly snow-bound series 'Fortitude'...
PROMOTED VIDEO
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all