Serena Williams Forced to Retire From Final Ahead of U.S. Open

Canadian Bianca Andreescu, 19, left with the Rogers Cup title

Serena Williams at the Rogers Cup.
Serena Williams wipes tears from her eyes at the Rogers Cup. (Steve Russell/Toronto Star via Getty)
Toronto Star via Getty Images
By Evan Bleier / August 12, 2019 10:38 am

In the final of the Rogers Cup on Sunday, 19-year-old Canadian Bianca Andreescu walked away with the win after Serena Williams was forced to retire because of an injury. 

Trailing Andreescu 3-1 in the first set, Williams called for a medical timeout and the chair umpire announced the 37-year-old was retiring from the match due to back spasms less than a minute later. 

Following the announcement, Andreescu went over to comfort Williams as she sat and started to cry on her bench.

“I’m not a crier, but, thank you guys,” Williams said while accepting the second-place check. “I’m sorry I couldn’t do it today. I tried but I just couldn’t do it.”

While speaking to reporters afterward, Williams said she tweaked her back during her semifinal win over Marie Bouzková. “Just my whole back just completely spasmed, and to a point where I couldn’t sleep and I couldn’t really move,” she said. “And so I was just trying to figure out, how do you play a match where you have no rotation?”

The U.S. Open begins on August 26. Hopefully, Williams will be healthy enough to attempt to take back the title from last year’s winner Naomi Osaka.

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