Azarenka to take time off court to have a baby

The Hamilton Spectator - - SPORTS - RACHEL CO­HEN

Two-time Grand Slam cham­pion Vic­to­ria Azarenka says she is preg­nant and plans to re­sume her ca­reer once the baby is born.

The 26-year-old from Be­larus posted on her Twit­ter ac­count Fri­day say­ing she is re­cov­er­ing from the knee in­jury that kept her out of Wim­ble­don, and she and her boyfriend learned they were ex­pect­ing a child at the end of the year.

“We couldn’t be hap­pier and feel very blessed to be­gin this ex­cit­ing jour­ney of build­ing a fam­ily to­gether,” she said. “I have been truly in­spired by so many strong fe­male ath­letes who re­turn to the very top of their sport af­ter hav­ing chil­dren. And I plan to do ex­actly that.”

No. 6-ranked Azarenka had to re­tire from the first-round French Open match May 24 when she hurt the knee and hasn’t played since.

She made the an­nounce­ment Fri­day just as the In­ter­na­tional Ten­nis Fed­er­a­tion was about to re­lease its list of play­ers for the Olympics. Her name was on the ros­ter even though she won’t be com­pet­ing in Rio.

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