Fatigued Henin to face $20,000 fine for pulling out of Italian Open

Updated: May 9, 2008, 6:14 PM ET
Associated Press

ROME -- Top-ranked Justine Henin has withdrawn from next week's Italian Open, citing fatigue, and the WTA Tour said Friday she will be fined $20,000 for the late withdrawal.

On Thursday, Henin lost to Dinara Safina 5-7, 6-3, 6-1 in the third round of the German Open. That loss followed a 6-2, 6-0 drubbing by Serena Williams at the Sony Ericsson Open last month, the worst for a No. 1 player in nine years. Maria Sharapova also beat her in straight sets at the Australian Open.

Before the German Open, Henin took a month off with a knee injury. She had hoped to restore her confidence in Berlin in time for the French Open, which she has won four times.

The WTA instituted a series of fines for late withdrawals in response to a rash of players pulling out of tournaments.


Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press