Azarenka says she might miss US Open
Player trying to resolve legal issues with father of her son
The US Open starts August 28
Former world No. 1 Victoria Azarenka might miss this month’s US Open because of legal issues involving the father of her child, the two-time grand slam champion has said in a statement on Thursday.
The 28-year-old from Belarus gave birth to her son, Leo, in December and made her tennis return earlier than expected, at the Mallorca Open in June.
At Wimbledon, her first major since becoming a mother, she lost in straight sets to world No. 2 Simona Halep in the last 16.
It was shortly after that tournament, Azarenka said, that she and Leo’s father separated. They are currently working to “resolve some of the legal processes.”
“The way things stand now is that the only way I can play in the US Open this year is if I leave Leo behind in California, which I’m not willing to do,” Azarenka said.
“Balancing child care and a career is not easy for any parent, but it is a challenge I am willing to face and embrace,” she continued.
“I want to support men and women everywhere who know it is OK to be a working mother – or father. No one should ever have to decide between a child and their career, we are strong enough to do both.”
Azarenka, twice a US Open finalist, had withdrawn from this week’s Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati, Ohio, citing a family matter.
The US Open starts at Flushing Meadows in New York on August 28.
“I look forward to hopefully having positive developments soon so that this difficult situation can be resolved and I can get back to competing,” Azarenka said.
“I remain optimistic that in the coming days Leo’s father and I can put aside any differences and take steps in the right direction to more effectively work as a team and agree on an arrangement for all three of us to travel and for me to compete but, more importantly, to ensure that Leo has a consistent presence from both of his parents.”