You gotta feel for Dinara Safina.
The former top lady baller was forced to withdraw from her fourth round match against Maria Kirilenko at the Aussie Open due to a recurrence of the back injury that knocked her out of the WTA Championships last season.
A disappointed Dinara discussed the painful injury in her post-match presser:
Q. Have you managed to speak to your doctor since you came off court?
DINARA SAFINA: No, not yet. I'm sure my coach is talking to him.
Q. How does this feel compared to last year when you had the back injury?
DINARA SAFINA: Exactly the same like in Doha. Exactly the same. I just cannot move anywhere.
I mean, the physio asked me to lie on the table. I said, I cannot lie. I cannot make any movement. Whatever I try to move, it hurts terribly.
Q. So it's gotten worse after you came off the court today?
DINARA SAFINA: Yes. Like because I took pain killer before the match, because I was feeling stiff. I think, Okay, I going to take it as a discomfort so I forget about the pain. Then at 3‑2, I said, Okay, can you please give me some more painkillers? I kept on trying because I thought like, Okay, it's going to work, it has to.
My coach told me at 4‑3 to retire. I'm like, Okay, I'm going to try. But it's no way.
Q. Do you think you may have done more damage by playing the extra two games?
DINARA SAFINA: Yeah, I'm think so. But, you know, you always hope that it cannot get worse. If it would be the same, you think, Okay, like pain killer, whatever, it can help. You always hope.
Now I see I did worse.
Q. Can you travel tomorrow with your back?
DINARA SAFINA: The plan for me is to see the doctor as soon as possible to see exactly what happened. I don't know how I will pack my bags. I guess I will ask my team to help me to pack my bags, because I really don't know how to move now.
Maybe I stay here one more day and I fly the other day. I don't know.
Wow, it sounds extremely painful. All the best in your recovery Dinara. Let's hope you can get this injury under control because these back issues have a tendency to become chronic.
But let's send a huge CONGRATS to Kiri for making her first Grand Slam quarterfinal. She's been playing some outstanding stuff this tourney and has a tremendous opportunity to reach the semifinals when she faces Chinese baller Jie Zheng next.