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Tennis: Olympic Champ Justine Henin-Hardenne Takes Year Off - 2004-10-11


Former women's world No. 1 and Olympic tennis champion Justine Henin-Hardenne of Belgium says she will not play any more this year because of the continuing effects of an energy-sapping virus.

Henin-Hardenne said Monday her two-year effort to become the top-ranked women's player, combined with the virus she has been battling since April, left her exhausted. In a note on her web site (www.henin-hardenne.be) the Belgian, 22, said "It's very logical and understandable that I'm this tired. It's high time I get some rest now." Despite the fatigue, she won the women's singles gold medal at the Athens Olympics. But she says that effort used up the last of her strength. Henin-Hardenne added that she is hoping for a good start next season and to return to the top ranking.

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