Chinese tennis association says Li Na may be out with serious injury

Chinese player Li Na may have a lengthy absence from the women's tour due to a rib injury suffered during a recent Wimbledon tuneup, a Chinese Tennis Association spokeswoman said Friday.

Li, ranked 18th in the world, withdrew from Wimbledon this week citing the injury.

The CTA's Xie Miqing said doctors in London were still checking on Li's condition, but she believed the injury was serious.

"She may need a long recovery," Xie said.

Li became the first Chinese player to reach the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam event at Wimbledon last year, and has reached at least the third round at the past five Grand Slams.

She was replaced in the Wimbledon draw by French lucky loser Alize Cornet.

Li's withdrawal leaves this year's Wimbledon women's singles draw without a Chinese name following the earlier withdrawal of Zheng Jie, who last year won the both the Wimbledon and Australian doubles titles with partner Yan Zi.