China Open: World number one Simona Halep retires due to injury


Simona Halep claimed her first grand slam title at the French Open earlier this year

World number one Simona Halep was forced to retire from the China Open in the first round due to injury.

The Romanian lost the first set 6-1 to Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur in Beijing before succumbing to the back injury after 31 minutes.

Halep, 27, suffered the injury a week ago in Wuhan.

Defending champion Caroline Garcia from France beat China’s Wang Yafan 7-6 (12-10) 6-7 (4-7) 6-3 to reach the second round.

Third seed Angelique Kerber from Germany also progressed with a 6-2 6-2 win over France’s Kristina Mladenovic.

British number one Johanna Konta suffered a first-round defeat by German 10th seed Julia Gorges on Saturday.

In the men’s event, British number two Cameron Norrie failed to quality for the main draw after losing 6-4 6-4 to Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic.

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