Tennis: Svitolina pulls out of Malaysia Open

Elina Svitolina withdrew from the Malaysian Open with a lower leg injury on Wednesday (March 1).
Elina Svitolina withdrew from the Malaysian Open with a lower leg injury on Wednesday (March 1). PHOTO: AFP

Kuala Lumpur (AFP) - Top seed and defending champion Elina Svitolina withdrew from the Malaysian Open with a lower leg injury on Wednesday, bringing her 13-match winning streak to a halt.

The Ukrainian world No. 10, who beat Caroline Wozniacki in Dubai last week to lift her second straight trophy, pulled out before her second round match against Japan's Nao Hibino.

Svitolina, 22, had needed treatment during her 6-2, 6-3 first-round win over Jang Su Jeong of South Korea - her 250th victory on the WTA tour.

"I was looking forward to coming back to Kuala Lumpur to defend my title and I was excited to play here but, unfortunately, I have to withdraw because of a lower leg injury," she said, according to the WTA website.

"I was struggling in my final match in Dubai and I was hoping to recover but... I need to make sure I take care of my body for the rest of the season."

Svitolina's unbeaten streak, which has pushed her into the top 10 for the first time, also included the Taiwan Open title and two Fed Cup wins against Australian opposition.