June 23, 2017 / 8:01 AM / 2 months ago

Svitolina suffers injury scare ahead of Wimbledon

Tennis - WTA Premier - Aegon Classic - Edgbaston Priory Club, Birmingham, Britain - June 22, 2017 Ukraine's Elina Svitolina in her match against Italy's Camila Giorgi during the second round Action Images via Reuters/Peter Cziborra

(Reuters) - World number five Elina Svitolina has expressed fears that a foot injury that contributed to her Aegon Classic defeat to Italian Camila Giorgi in Birmingham on Thursday could lead to her withdrawal from Wimbledon.

The in-form Ukrainian won the Italian Open in May and lost in the French Open quarter-finals earlier this month but has never progressed past the second round at the All England Club.

Svitolina, 22, has never won a tournament on grass and says that withdrawing from Wimbledon could help her get a head start on preparations for hard court tournaments later this year.

"I was really looking forward to this year at Wimbledon. But today the court was slippery and it's so bad for my foot. I will do my best," Svitolina told reporters after the match.

"But for the moment it's very uncomfortable, and there is a question about it, because the season is still long and there is lots of big tournaments as well where I will feel more comfortable and confident on the hard court."

Svitolina joins a number of top players racing to be fit for Wimbledon, which begins on July 3, with Nick Kyrgios, Angelique Kerber, Simona Halep and Juan Martin Del Potro all withdrawing from warm-up tournaments for the third grand slam of the year.

Reporting by Aditi Prakash in Bengaluru

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