Naomi Osaka exits opening match at Toronto with back injury

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Naomi Osaka’s recent struggles continued Tuesday with an early exit at the National Bank Open.

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The four-time Grand Slam champion retired from her first-round match with a back injury

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She was trailing 7-6 (4), 3-0 against Estonia’s Kaia Kanepi when she withdrew from the contest.

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“I felt my back from the start of the match, and despite trying to push through it, I just wasn’t able to today,” Osaka said.

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“I’d like to pay credit to Kaia for playing well and want to wish her all the best for the rest of the tournament.”

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Entering the tournament, Osaka had been eliminated from her last three competitions in the first or second round

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including a straight-sets loss to Coco Gauff at last week’s Mubadala Silicon Valley Classic.

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That was her first tournament since the French Open as she recovered from an Achilles injury.

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Prior to that run, she had her best tournament of the year making it to the final of the Miami Open in early April before losing to top-ranked Iga Swiatek.

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The 31st-ranked Kanepi will next play No. 8 Garbine Muguruza of Spain.