"The Australian Open is her favourite tournament and she's looking forward to returning to Melbourne next year." Azarenka returned from maternity leave in the middle of last year but skipped the US Open after a Los Angeles judge presiding in a custody case over her son Leo ruled she could not leave California until the matter had been settled.
Two-time champion Victoria Azarenka has withdrawn from the AO.“It’s unfortunate that @vika7 is unable to travel to Australia this year. The #AusOpen is her favourite tournament and she’s looking forward to returning to Melbourne next year,” - @CraigTiley — #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 8, 2018
She had been in doubt for Melbourne Park after pulling out of last week's Auckland Classic. The Belarusian is the latest top name to withdraw from the Australian Open. Serena Williams, herself a new mother, opted out last week, saying she was still not at the level needed for a major tournament after giving birth. Andy Murray and Kei Nishikori are also non-starters after succumbing to injury.
Victoria Azarenka pulls out of #AustralianOpen amid custody battle for son- https://t.co/XoEzTd7E0I pic.twitter.com/ttGTgF0uHZ — The Field (@thefield_in) January 8, 2018