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Serena Williams withdraws in Rome

Updated: May 19, 2012, 8:30 AM ET
Associated Press

ROME -- Serena Williams withdrew from the Italian Open with a lower back injury shortly before she was scheduled to meet French Open champion Li Na in the semifinals on Saturday.

Williams said the problem also affected her earlier this week.

"It was feeling a little stiff and I don't think this is the right moment to force (it)," she said. "I just want to relax and get ready for the next few months."

The withdrawal comes eight days before the French Open, but Williams ...

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