Simona Halep withdraws from Qatar Open

Not specifying any reason for the sudden withdrawal, Halep said she is looking forward to being back in Doha next year.

Romania's Simona Halep looks dejected after her quarter final match against Serena Williams of the U.S.   -  REUTERS

World number three Simona Halep has withdrawn from next week's Qatar Open in Doha, the organisers of the WTA 500 tournament announced on Tuesday.

Halep, who lost in straight sets to Serena Williams in the Australian Open quarterfinals last week, did not specify why she was pulling out of the hardcourt tournament to be held from March 1-6.

"Unfortunately I have made the decision to withdraw from the Qatar Total Open," Halep said in a statement released by the tournament organisers.

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"It's always one of my favourite stops on the tour and I really look forward to being back in Doha next year."

World number one Ash Barty and American Sofia Kenin are expected to compete in the tournament along with the likes of Elina Svitolina, Karolina Pliskova and Aryna Sabalenka.