Williams withdraws from Cincinnati and sparks speculation over US Open involvement

Serena Williams had to retire in the final of the Rogers Cup when she was 3-1 down in the first set against Bianca Andreescu (PA Images)
14:02pm, Wed 14 Aug 2019
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Serena Williams' withdrawal from the Cincinnati Masters has provoked question marks over her involvement at the US Open in just two weeks.

The 23-time Grand Slam champion had to retire from the Rogers Cup final against Bianca Andreescu last week due to back problems.

And now a second pull-out has led many to ponder whether or not she will compete in New York - a tournament she has not won since 2014.

Williams has lost her last three Grand Slam finals and has been seeking a record-equalling 24th since she won the 2017 Australian Open against her sister Venus.

Speaking of Venus, she came through her match against last year's Cincinnati champion Kiki Bertens 6-3 3-6 7-6 (7-4) to advance to the third round.

Elsewhere in Ohio, Maria Sharapova beat Alison Riske to set up a sensational tie with former world number one Ashleigh Barty.