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`Injured` Simona Halep pulls out of St. Petersburg

Johannesburg [South Africa]:Top-seed Simona Halep has pulled out of the ongoing St. Petersburg Trophy due to a persistent knee injury.

Disappointed to announce the news, the Romanian said that she felt pain in the last match and, therefore, decided not to continue.

“I’m really disappointed that I had to withdraw from the quarter-final today, but my knee is not okay. After my last match I felt pain and I feel it’s risky to continue here,” Sport24 quoted Halep as saying.

As a result of Halep’s withdrawal, 19-year-old wildcard Natalia Vikhlyantseva of Russia will advance to the semi-finals, where she will lock horns with France’s Kristina Mladenovic who knocked out defending champion and sixth seed Roberta Vinci of Italy 6-1, 6-4.

Earlier, Halep, who crashed out of last month’s Australian Open in the first round, defeated Croatia’s Ana Konjuh in the second round of St. Petersburg to storm into the quarter-finals.(ANI)