Azarenka forced out in Brisbane

World number one Victoria Azarenka has withdrawn from the Brisbane International with a right big toe injury.

The world number one was due to face Serena Williams in the semi-finals on Friday but the reigning Australian Open champion was forced to admit defeat in her fitness battle.

Tournament director Cameron Pearson said in a statement: "Victoria Azarenka has tonight withdrawn from her semi final meeting with Serena Williams with a right big toe injury.

"Victoria has been nursing this injury for the past 10 days and it has continued to deteriorate to a point where she is unable to take to the court tonight. We wish her all the best with her recovery and we hope to see her in Melbourne to defend her Australian Open title."

Williams is handed a walkover to the final where she will face either Lesia Tsurenko or Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.