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Emma Raducanu: Injury forces final-set retirement in US Open champion's first-round Guadalajara Open match

Britain's Emma Raducanu was No 1 seed for the Guadalajara Open, but was forced to retire in the final set in her first-round match against Daria Saville after suffering an injury

ZAPOPAN, MEXICO - FEBRERO 22: Emma Raducanu de Gran Breta..a durante el dia 3 del Abierto de Tenis de la WTA Akron Zapopan 2022 en el Centro Panamericano de Tenis el 22 de Febrero de 2022 en Zapopan, Mexico. (Foto: Cesar Gomez/Jam Media)
Image: Emma Raducanu was forced to retire in the final set of her match against Daria Saville

A hip injury forced Emma Raducanu to retire in the final set of a marathon first competitive outing since bowing out at the Australian Open.

The No 1 seed was forced to quit after three hours and 36 minutes in the first round of the Guadalajara Open, with Australia's Daria Saville progressing 5-7 7-6 (7-4) 4-3 from the longest match of the WTA season.

"This is probably the first match in a long time when I felt like I was being myself," Saville said after the win. "I was being feisty Dasha. I just want to keep on working and keep on going here."

Raducanu was playing her first match since a hand blister caused her problems in a three-set loss to Danka Kovinic in the second round of the Australian Open last month.

The British star lay down an early marker though, claiming the opening set after a tough 80 minutes by bouncing back from an early break to herself break Saville in the final game.

Reigning US Open champion Raducanu served for the match at 5-3 in the second, but Saville broke back to force a tiebreak which she played cleanly to claim the set.

aria Sabille of Australia celebrates a point during a match between Daria Sabille of Australia and Emma Raducanu of Britain as part of day 2 of the AKRON WTA Zapopan Open 2022 at Centro Panamericano de Tenis on February 22, 2022 in Zapopan, Mexico. (Photo by Cesar Gomez/Jam Media/Getty Images)
Image: Saville battled leg cramps during the epic encounter against Raducanu

Both women appeared to be playing through the pain in the decider, with Saville battling leg cramps and Raducanu taking an off-court medical timeout.

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The world No 12 returned to the court with her upper left leg taped and played two more games, but ultimately the injury she had sustained forced her retirement from the match.

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