Heather Watson was forced to retire from her quarter-final match of ITF Barnstaple against Johanna Konta due to food poisoning.
This match signed the end of the season for the British number three, who has had far from a lucky one.
Watson came to Barnstaple after a promising week in Poitiers, where she reached the semi-finals, and so her mood and attitude were high after the difficult season she had just left behind.
Despite starting the season by collecting her best ranking, Watson was soon forced to stay away from the tennis courts due to glandular fever, something she found out only thanks to a blood test. However, she pushed her comeback too early and hence results failed to arrive, leaving her in a state of unhappiness and disbelief.
The week in Poitiers came at the right time though and earlier this week she said: “I am feeling good and after having a good week last week, with some very tough matches in three sets, I am feeling a lot happier, a lot more confident and just enjoying tennis more.”
She looked very positive also on court both during training and her matches, but sadly yesterday a bout of food poisoning hit her during her second-round match against Vrlijc.
Nonetheless, she overcame the sickness and Vrlijc in order to snatch a three set win, which allowed her to meet her compatriot and friend Konta today.
The challenge was too big this afternoon though, and Watson immediately looked fatigued and unable to produce a quality of tennis good enough to challenge Konta. As a result, instead of risking further injuries, she decided to retire.
The warm hug to the net proved the friendship of the two, who are supposed to play together in the doubles semi-final tomorrow.
The food poisoning might have ended her season a few days earlier than hoped, but Watson is a hard worker and she has said she is willing to be ready for the next season.
“It just came up being a terrible season, but I am glad I can finish it on a high note and inspired again and motivated to play and work hard.”