Tennis • With the Australian Open just over a week away, Venus Williams and Sloane Stephens withdrew from warm-up tournaments on Sunday and another American, John Isner, could soon join them.
Williams, who lost the final of the Auckland WTA tournament on Saturday, pulled out of the Hobart International, informing officials Sunday. "I don't believe she has an injury," tournament director Mark Handley said. "She's played a lot of tough, close matches over in Auckland, and in the lead-up to a first Grand Slam [of the season], she's not taking any chances."
Isner also appeared in doubt for an Auckland ATP tournament, where he is the third-seeded player, after re-injuring his right ankle at the Hopman Cup.