France’s Mauresmo opts out of Beijing Olympic

July 3rd, 2008 - 7:22 pm ICT by IANS  

Geneva, July 3 (DPA) Former French Wimbledon winner Amelie Mauresmo has opted to join compatriot Richard Gasquet and American Andy Roddick as a high-profile defector from the Olympic tennis event. Mauresmo told her website Thursday that she - like Roddick and Gasquet - would not make the trip to Beijing in order to prepare for the US Open, which begins only a few days after the Beijing tennis final.

“As I was not picked to play singles and because I need to prevent further physical problems, I’ve decided not to take part in the Olympics. I will concentrate on preparing for the US Open,” the 28-year-old said.

The French team will also be missing 2006 Wimbledon finalist Marion Bartoli, who is ineligible for the event under international rules. Mary Pierce, who has not played in two years after an ankle injury, is expected to withdraw from her special exempt place.

Swiss-based Mauresmo was to have only played doubles at the August 8-24 Games, making her trip not worth the trouble in her eyes.

Mauresmo, who once stood number one, has been struggling with injuries, losing in the second round of the French Open and going out to Serena Williams in the Wimbledon third round.

Seven of the top ten women will compete in Beijing with only Anna Chakvetadze of Russia declining in addition to Bartoli.

On the men’s side, all five of the top men will compete, with only Roddick and Gasquet out.

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