Seles withdraws from the French Open

PARIS (AP) — Three-time champion Monica Seles pulled out of the French Open on Friday because of a foot injury that forced her to miss two months of play this season.

I'm really disappointed,'' Seles said.I gave my best effort. I came here really hoping to play, but my foot is just not ready.”

The $10 million French Open starts Monday, and Seles’ withdrawal further depletes the women’s field. Reigning champion Mary Pierce, Anna Kournikova and Chanda Rubin are injured and unable to play.

With Seles out, the seeded players advanced one spot in the Grand Slam event. Meghann Shaughnessy of the United States became the 16th-seeded player.

Seles lost her opening match this week at the Spanish Open, her first tournament since March.

I came to Europe hoping to get some matches coming into Paris,'' Seles said.But after just one match I had pain. I was hoping it would pass, but even though the French Open is my favorite tournament, I cannot play.”

Seles, a Yugoslav-born American citizen, won the French in 1990, 1991 and 1992 and was a finalist in 1998. She reached the quarterfinals last year and was ranked sixth in the preliminary seedings this year.

“I hope to be ready for Wimbledon,” Seles said. She is not entered in any competitions between now and Wimbledon.