PERTH, Australia – South Africa beat France 2-1 at the Hopman Cup on Friday when Jo-Wilfried Tsonga had to retire in the deciding mixed doubles with a groin injury that later prompted him to withdraw from next week's Sydney International tournament.
Chanelle Scheepers of South Africa beat France's Mathilde Johansson 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 before Tsonga defeated Kevin Anderson 7-6 (4), 7-6 (3) during a match in which the French player appeared to slightly injure his groin while stretching for shot during a rally.
Scheepers and Anderson had won the first set of the mixed doubles 6-3 and were trailing 2-1 on serve in the second when Tsonga indicated that he could not continue. Neither team had a chance of advancing to the final.
Tsonga said he retired as a precaution to ensure the injury doesn't worsen before the Australian Open, which begins in Melbourne on Jan. 14th.
"I don't know exactly what I have but I felt something during the singles," Tsonga said. "(Time) was a bit short between the singles and the mixed doubles, so I didn't have time to know exactly what is it. It was a bit more sore during the mixed doubles so for me it was better to quit."
Afterward, Sydney International tournament director Craig Watson announced that Tsonga had withdrawn from that event, where he would have been the top-seeded player.
Serbia was to play Germany later Friday, where a win by the Serbian team of Novak Djokovic and Ana Ivanovic would advance them to Saturday's final against Spain.