NEW YORK (Kyodo) Japan’s Ai Sugiyama missed out on a chance to claim her first women’s doubles title in four years at the U.S Open after partner Elena Dementieva pulled out of their women’s semifinal match Friday to focus on her singles final.

The 15th-seeded pair were set to face top-seeded duo Virginia Ruano Pascual and Paola Suarez at National Tennis Center but Dementieva withdrew citing her match against fellow Russian Svetlana Kusnetsova, handing the Spaniards a walkover win in the doubles.

“When you are into the final of a Grand Slam you want to be in tip-top condition and if I were in her position I would have done the same thing,” said Sugiyama, who has won three Grand Slam women’s doubles titles, including the 2000 U.S. Open.

“But it was good to get to the last four and she said that she had really enjoyed playing with me,” she added.

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