March 7, 2020 / 10:34 AM / a month ago

Injured Halep and Kerber pull out of Indian Wells

FILE PHOTO - Tennis - WTA Premier 5 - Dubai Tennis Championships - Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium, Dubai, United Arab Emirates - February 22, 2020 Romania's Simona Halep in action during the final against Kazakhstan's Elena Rybakina REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah

(Reuters) - Former world number ones Simona Halep and Angelique Kerber have pulled out of next week’s BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells after failing to recover from injuries.

The tournament is the season’s first Premier Mandatory event and Romanian Halep, the reigning Wimbledon champion, has not shaken off a foot problem.

"I'm incredibly disappointed to have to withdraw from the 2020 BNP Paribas Open," Halep, the world number two, said in a statement on the tournament's Twitter here handle.

“Unfortunately, the foot injury that I picked up before Dubai is still causing me trouble and I will be unable to recover in time to travel to Indian Wells.”

Halep, who won the Dubai title last month, was champion at Indian Wells in 2015.

Three-times Grand Slam champion Kerber has not recovered from a leg injury and the 32-year-old is also set to miss this month’s Miami Open.

"My patience is being tested these days as I'm still recovering from a left leg injury," the German, last year's runner-up at Indian Wells, wrote on Instagram here

“I was hoping to be ready in time for the upcoming tournaments in Indian Wells and Miami, but my medical team advised me to give it a little bit more rest.”

Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru, editing by Ed Osmond

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