Osaka out of WTA Finals with injured right shoulder

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SHENZHEN, China — Naomi Osaka withdrew from the WTA Finals on Tuesday with a right shoulder injury.

The two-time Grand Slam champion had been scheduled to play top-ranked Ash Barty at the season-ending tournament.

“I’m disappointed to have to withdraw from the finals,” Osaka said in a statement. “This is not how I wanted to end this tournament or my season but I look forward to getting healthy and hope to be back here next year.”

Alternate Kiki Bertens will take Osaka’s place against Barty.

Osaka opened the tournament by beating Petra Kvitova 7-6 (1), 4-6, 6-4 in the Red Group. Barty also won her first match, beating Belinda Bencic 5-7, 6-1, 6-2.

Osaka said the injury surfaced in Beijing this month. She won tournaments in Osaka, Japan, and Beijing heading into the WTA Finals.

“Actually I did this in the finals of Beijing,” she said at a news conference. “I didn’t serve for a while when I was in Japan. I just started serving the last two days. Felt better, came here, then I played my match.

“I felt it immediately (while playing Kvitova). When I woke up the day after, it was like throbbing and stuff. Yeah, didn’t serve at all yesterday. Hit for like five minutes.”

Osaka’s WTA Finals debut in Singapore last year also ended on a low note with a 0-3 record in round-robin matches. She retired with an injury against Bertens in her third match after losing the first set.

“This is the second time I had to withdraw from the Finals,” Osaka said. “The last time I at least played, so a retirement instead of a withdrawal.

“I thought I was playing well. I definitely wanted to win here.”

As an alternate, Bertens is eligible to advance to the semifinals, which is determined by match wins.

Alcaraz loses to Goffin in 1st match as No. 1

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ASTANA, Kazakhstan — Carlos Alcaraz’s first match as the No. 1-ranked player ended with a straight-set loss to David Goffin at the Astana Open.

The 19-year-old Spaniard lost 7-5, 6-3 in his first tour match since winning the U.S. Open and capturing the No. 1 ranking.

“David was playing really, really well. To come back to competition is never easy,” Alcaraz said. “It’s really tough for me, for my confidence.”

Alcaraz came from 5-2 down to level the first set at 5-5, only to be broken again by his Belgian opponent.

“When you play against the World No. 1 on a big stage, big crowd, the fire inside gives you so much power to play your best tennis because you don’t have any choice,” Goffin said. “You have to fight and give your best and that was the case today.”

Second-seeded Daniil Medvedev and No. 3-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas both avoided similar upsets. Medvedev beat Albert Ramos-Vinolas of Spain 6-3, 6-1 and Tsitsipas ousted Kazakhstan’s Mikhail Kukushkin 6-3. 6-4.

Kasatkina knocks out Raducanu at Agel Open

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OSTRAVA, Czech Republic — Fifth-seeded Daria Kasatkina defeated 2021 U.S. Open champion Emma Raducanu 7-5, 6-4 to advance to the second round of the Agel Open.

Kasatkina was playing her first match since losing in the first round of the U.S. Open and will next face Ekaterina Alexandrova.

Sixth-seeded Belinda Bencic of Switzerland rallied to eliminate former top-five player Eugenie Bouchard of Canada 6-7 (7), 6-1, while Aliaksandra Sasnovich upset eighth-seeded Jelena Ostapenko 6-2, 6-2.

American qualifiers Alycia Parks and Catherine McNally both advanced. Parks upset Czech Karolina Pliskova 6-0, 7-6 (3) and McNally eased past Anna Blinkova 6-1, 6-2 at the indoor hardcourt event in the Czech eastern city of Ostrava.