Beyond the Baseline

Victoria Azarenka takes wild card into Wimbledon tune-up tournament

Victoria Azarenka Victoria Azarenka has played only 10 matches this year. (Michael Dodge/Getty Images)

Former No. 1 Victoria Azarenka, who has been sidelined most of the year with a right foot injury, accepted a wild card into next week's Aegon International in Eastbourne, England.

The grass-court tune-up for Wimbledon will be the first tournament in three months for Azarenka, who slipped to No. 8 in this week's WTA Tour rankings after missing the European clay-court season. Her only match since the Australian Open was an opening-round loss to Lauren Davis at the BNP Paribas Open in March, when Azarenka clearly struggled with the injury.

Azarenka tweeted a photo on Tuesday that seemed to indicate she's back to practicing on grass.

The 24-year-old from Belarus is a two-time Wimbledon semifinalist. Last year, she withdrew after injuring her right knee on a nasty fall during her first-round victory.

No. 4 Agnieszka Radwanska headlines the field in Eastbourne, which currently features five of the top 10. Elena Vesnina is the defending champion.

Wimbledon begins on June 23.
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