Victoria Azarenka was in obvious pain during her loss to Lauren Davis. (Jeff Gross/AP)
No. 4 Victoria Azarenka has withdrawn from the Sony Open with an injury for the second year in a row.
A two-time champion in Miami, Azarenka is still recovering from a foot injury she suffered before the Australian Open. After losing to Lauren Davis 6-0, 7-6 (2) in her opening match at the BNP Paribas Open last week, Azarenka described the injury as "nerve damage" and she was unable to say she was practicing pain-free.
Azarenka wore a walking boot for three weeks in February and returned to the practice court only a week before Indian Wells. She chose to play the tournament to test the injury, but it became immediately clear that she was nowhere fit enough to compete.
“I am very sad not to be able to compete at this year's Sony Open in Miami,” Azarenka said in a statement. “I love playing in the U.S. and my results in the past were also great. But it’s been now over a year that it seems that bad luck has been following me. I couldn’t play in Miami last year with a problem in my ankle and now this with my foot. It is time for me to think about my recovery and will work hard for that.”