Justine Henin-Hardenne says she will not play for Belgium's Fed Cup tennis team when it takes on Russia in the opening round of the women's team event next year.

The world number five Henin-Hardenne said Tuesday that injuries and illness have compromised her 2005 season and she wants to avoid further problems in 2006. After winning the French Open in June, Henin-Hardenne has been troubled by a thigh injury for much of the season.

The Belgian star says she will concentrate on regaining the world number-one ranking.

The announcement is a big blow to Belgium's Fed Cup hopes because world number three Kim Clijsters announced that she would also skip the competition if Henin-Hardenne does not play.

Some information for this report provided by AP.