12 Jan 2010

Nalbandian's frustrating injury run continues

8:04 am on 12 January 2010

The Argentinian tennis star David Nalbandian has pulled out of Auckland's Heineken Open.

The former world number three strained an abdominal muscle in practice, and his absence robs the tournament of one of the most intriguing first round clashes with the 2008 champion Philipp Kohlschreiber of Germany.

The New Zealand number two Rubin Statham couldn't repeat his singles win in the doubles on Monday night.

Statham knocked out number one Dan King-Turner in straight sets but then lost the late doubles match with his brother Oliver, to fellow New Zealander Marcus Daniell and his Romanian partner, 6-3 6-2.

The Auckland Classic semi-finalist Shahar Peer of Israel has made the next round at the Hobart tennis International, while China's Li Na has already had a better tournament at the Sydney International than she did here.

Na upset the fourth-seeded Dane Caroline Wozniacki in three sets to progress.

The Auckland runner-up Flavia Pennetta's also through in Sydney, beating Australia number one Samantha Stosur in straight sets.