CARLSBAD — Fans wanting to see sisters Venus and Serena Williams participate in the Acura Classic singles draw together for the first time will have to wait for another opportunity.
Three-time tournament champion Venus Williams, who retired from a semifinal match against Lindsay Davenport at the JPMorgan Chase Open in Carson on Saturday with a sprained right wrist, withdrew from the $1.3-million Acura Classic at the La Costa Resort and Spa on Tuesday because of the injury. It was the first year that both sisters had entered the Acura tournament to play singles.
Williams, the Acura champion from 2000-02, decided after being examined by a WTA tour trainer Tuesday morning that she could not play a first-round match against Gisela Dulko of Argentina for fear of aggravating the ailment.
Williams has been trying to rebound from an injury-plagued 2003 season in which she suffered a strained abdominal muscle that forced her to miss 4 1/2 months and caused her to fall out of the top 10 in the WTA rankings for the first time since 1998. She is currently ranked No. 10 and was seeded 11th in the Acura tournament.
"I am certainly disappointed I will not be able to compete in the Acura Classic this year," Williams said in a statement. "I have been resting my wrist and receiving as much treatment as possible in order to give myself every possible chance to play today. Unfortunately, there just wasn't enough time to recover."
Williams went on the stadium court before the first-round match with Dulko to apologize for her withdrawal. Dulko then beat alternate Tamarine Tanasugarn of Thailand, 6-3, 6-4.
The Democratic National Convention in Boston wasn't the only place where security was a top priority Monday night.
It was tight at La Costa too, thanks to an overnight visit by Vice President Dick Cheney, who was scheduled to visit Camp Pendleton on Tuesday as part of a three-state West Coast campaign swing.
The vice president's arrival about 10 p.m. left hotel guests facing barricaded roads and driveways, met at each turn by police and Secret Service agents. The blockades left several guests stuck in traffic for 20 minutes.
Today's Featured Matches
Second-round matches at the Acura Classic:
STADIUM COURT, STARTING AT 10 A.M.
* Iveta Benesova, Czech Republic, vs. Conchita Martinez, Spain.
* Daniela Hantuchova, Slovakia, vs. Svetlana Kuznetsova, Russia.
* Alicia Molik, Australia, vs. Amelie Mauresmo, France.
* Gisela Dulko, Argentina, vs. Mary Pierce, France.
STADIUM COURT, STARTING AT 7 P.M.
* Karolina Sprem, Croatia, vs. Lindsay Davenport.
* Dulko/Patricia Tarabini vs. Martina Navratilova/Lisa Raymond.