Torn calf muscle to sideline Molik for six weeks
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February 08, 2008 12:00am
ALICIA Molik's injury curse has grown worse - on two fronts - with the former world No. 8 now nursing a torn calf and golfer's elbow.
Molik will be sidelined for at least six weeks after a Fed Cup setback that will compromise the South Australian's preparation for May's French Open.
"Alicia's calf is black and she's on crutches," Molik's coach Nicole Bradtke said yesterday.
"She tore the calf at six-all in the first set in Fed Cup against New Zealand up in Bangkok (last week).
"She ran for a drop shot and she said it felt as if someone had hit her from behind with a racquet across the calf.
"She basically snapped the calf. There's a 2 1/2cm tear in her leg. Alicia's also got golfer's elbow, which is probably more of a worry because we know, with time, the calf's going to get better."
Molik is having rehabilitation daily at Olympic Park and hopes to resume at Miami next month.
Molik stood on the cusp of the top five in January 2005, only to be struck down by a debilitating inner-ear infection. In 2003 she suffered heel spurs on both feet.
In 2007 she was inconvenienced by a hamstring strain while also experiencing the first twinges of golfer's elbow.
And, while attempting to pilot Australia's unsuccessful bid for Fed Cup promotion, Molik tore her left calf.
"It's extremely unfortunate," Bradtke said.
"We were saying up in Bangkok that, as recently as three years ago, we had a world-class Fed Cup team.
"But with injuries and illness to Alicia and Sam Stosur, we're now struggling a bit. Alicia won't be hitting tennis balls for at least three weeks.
"We had planned to play Indian Wells, Rome, Strasbourg and the French Open, but now we'll have to make some adjustments.
"Miami (March 24-April 6) is a chance, but we might look at contesting some of the smaller ITF (International Tennis Federation) events.
"It will all depend on how Alicia recovers. The hardest thing with a calf is that you have to leave it a week longer than you actually think.
"We're confident Alicia will be ready for the French."
Bradtke said Molik would have to carefully monitor golfer's elbow, which is caused by over-use of muscles and tendons around the elbow.
At its most severe, the condition can produce shooting pains down the forearm.
Ranked 66th in the world, Molik lost in the second round of the Australia Open to Czech Nicole Vaidisova.