INDIAN WELLS, Calif. — Reigning U.S. Open champion Bianca Andreescu of Canada will not defend her title at the BNP Paribas Open because of a lingering left knee injury.
Andreescu dropped out of the WTA Tour Premier Mandatory event on Saturday, four days before the main draw begins. She hasn't played a competitive match since suffering the injury in late October in China.
The 19-year-old Ontario native has not revealed the exact nature of the injury.
"As many of you know, I've been working through an injury I suffered last year during the WTA Finals," Andreescu said in a statement released on the tournament's Twitter feed. “It's been a long road to recovery, and while I was looking forward to getting back on court and defending my title at Indian Wells, unfortunately I'm still not 100 per cent. ... I am focused on my recovery and rehab and working hard to get back on the court as soon as possible."
The BNP Paribas Open title last year was the first of three for Andreescu after she started 2019 outside the top 150. Given a wild-card entry to the Indian Wells event after a promising start to her season, Andreescu beat Angelique Kerber of Germany in a dramatic final.
Andreescu retired from the next tournament with a shoulder injury that kept her out for an extended period, then returned in August to win the Rogers Cup in Toronto and the season's final Grand Slam in New York.
Despite her absence from play, Andreescu has reached a Canadian record No. 4 in the world rankings.
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The Associated Press