Venus Williams will not be competing in the Australian Open, the tennis icon confirmed Friday.
Williams joins sister Serena in pulling out of the Grand Slam, marking the first time since 1997 that the Australian Open will go on without both Williams sisters.
Venus last took the court in August for Chicago’s WTA 250 tournament, contending with a leg injury that has dropped the 41-year-old to No. 318 in the world rankings.
Serena announced in December that she would be skipping the Australian Open, still tending to a right hamstring injury that forced the American star to withdraw from Wimbledon in June.
Since her first appearance in 1998, Venus has only missed three Australian Opens.
The Melbourne Grand Slam is set to kick off on Jan. 17.
Shuai has been at the center of discussions since November.
Kanepi has now reached a quarterfinal in every Grand Slam.
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