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Injury keeps Williams from Doha

Tennis

New York - Former World No. 1 Venus Williams withdrew from next week's WTA Qatar Open, citing a lower back injury.

The 32-year-old American, who was ousted by Maria Sharapova in the third round of last month's Australian Open, has been nagged by the injury since her loss in Melbourne.

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(File image) Venus Williams

Williams, ranked 23rd, pulled out of the WTA Paris Open and this week's US Fed Cup quarter-final tie at Italy because of the back injury.

Williams is a seven-time Grand Slam singles champion whose most recent major title came in 2008 at Wimbledon, where she is a five-time champion.

In 2011, she was diagnosed with Sjogren's syndrome, an auto-immune disease that can cause fatigue. - Sapa-AFP

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