Iga Swiatek pulls out of Miami Open 2023 and Billie Jean King Cup as rib injury forces layoff
Iga Swiatek has withdrawn from the on-going Miami Open as well as the Billie Jean King Cup set to be held in April. The World No. 1, who is the defending champion in Miami, broke the unfortunate news on her social media handle on Wednesday, March 22.
Iga Swiatek conveyed that the rib injury, which she cited after her unsuccessful title defense in Indian Wells, was the reason for the withdrawal. The tennis player revealed that the origins of the injury can be traced back to the lung infection she picked up during her title win at the Qatar Open.
“You know that in and after Doha I was struggling with a strong infection. I was allowed to play, but a strong episode of tough cough led to rib injury,” Iga Swiatek said.
The 21-year-old admitted that she had been playing through the discomfort ever since, but after her latest diagnosis, she and her medical team reached the decision to pull out of the Miami Open and the Billie Jean King Cup.
“We were trying to handle it and continue to play as long as it was safe for me,” she said, adding, “We were analyzing the data in the last days and my doctor prepared my diagnosis. Unfortunately, I’m still feeling a lot of discomfort and pain and I can’t compete. I need to pull out of the Miami Open and Billie Jean King Cup.”
The player stated that, albeit a difficult decision, her health was of the utmost importance. Iga Swiatek further noted that she was fortunate to not have had any other major issues up until now in her young career.
“It’s a truly difficult call to not play in Miami and the BJKC, but health is the most important… I’m grateful this is the first health issue in a long time and I was able to compete in perfect shape for so long, but that’s sports, it happens sometimes, without our control… Time to accept it and get well as soon as possible,” the Pole said.
"I will keep you updated about where I play next" – Iga Swiatek
The unfortunate update could not have come at a worse time for Iga Swiatek. The Pole is in the midst of the mammoth task of defending as many as six back-to-back titles she earned in the first half of 2022.
As of now, the three-time Grand Slam champion has successfully defended her Qatar Open title, but encountered a semifinal defeat at the hands of eventual champion Elena Rybakina in Indian Wells.
With her title defense at the Miami Open going down the drain, Iga Swiatek will hope to recover as quickly as possible to defend her three upcoming clay titles in Stuttgart, Rome and the French Open.
“I will keep you updated about where I play next, because it depends on my process of recovering and the recommendation of my medical team. I have the best team behind me, we only need some time to deal with the injury,” the World No. 1 said on an optimistic note.