Simona Halep pulls out of Qatar Open

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Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 14, 2021 Romania’s Simona Halep celebrates during her fourth round match against Poland’s Iga Swiatek REUTERS/Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

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World number three Simona Halep has withdrawn from next week’s Qatar Open in Doha, the organizers of the WTA 500 tournament announced on Tuesday.

Halep, who lost in straight sets to Serena Williams in the Australian Open quarterfinals last week, did not specify why she was pulling out of the March 1-6 hard court tournament.

“Unfortunately I have made the decision to withdraw from the Qatar Total Open,” Halep said in a statement released by the tournament organizers.

“It’s always one of my favorite stops on the tour and I really look forward to being back in Doha next year.”

World number one Ash Barty and American Sofia Kenin are expected to compete in the tournament along with the likes of Elina Svitolina, Karolina Pliskova and Aryna Sabalenka.

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