Pliskova out of Sydney International
World number six Karolina Pliskova has withdrawn from the Sydney International with a left thigh injury, tournament organisers said on Sunday.
The Czech, who was the fourth seed for the Sydney event, demolished France's Alize Cornet 6-0, 6-3 to win the Brisbane International on Saturday.
As her withdrawal came before the start of the first match, Italian Roberta Vinci as the next eligible seed took Pliskova's open spot and a qualifier/lucky loser would come into the draw, organisers said.
Pliskova is set to leapfrog Dominika Cibulkova to become world number five when the new rankings are released on Monday.
Pliskova is one of the favourites for the Australian Open, which begins in Melbourne next week. She was runner-up to world number one Angelique Kerber at last year's US Open.
Ukraine's world No.14 Elina Svitolina later became the second top-ranking player to withdraw from the tournament, citing a viral illness.
“I’ve had constant headaches for the last two days and unfortunately in today’s hot weather it got even worse when I was warming up and my body wasn’t ready to compete,” Svitolina said.
The next eligible seed Denmark's Caroline Wozniacki takes the open spot and will face Monica Puig of Puerto Rico on Monday.