Caroline Garcia is hopeful of overcoming a back problem to feature at the Australian Open in Melbourne.
The Frenchwoman enjoyed a strong finish to the 2017 campaign as she won title at both the Wuhan Open and the China Open, before reaching the semi-final of the season-sending WTA Tour Finals in Singapore.
However, her first match back after a break, a the Brisbane International, ended in disappointing fashion as she was forced to retire when locked at one set all with compatriot Alize Cornet.
World number eight Garcia, though, refused to be too downbeat after her latest issue with a troublesome back.
She told reporters: "I've always had some issues with my back.
"At the beginning of the match I felt a pain in my lower back and it was different than it is normally. It was getting worse and worse and in the end I couldn't really move. There was no point to keep going."
Of her prospects of being fit and ready to feature in Melbourne, Garcia added: "I mean, it's in two weeks, so it's a long time. With the back it's always complicated, especially mine.
"It's really something I take care of, so it's kind of surprising for it to show up like this. But we'll do the best that we can."
Garcia is currently priced at to win the Australian Open, with Garbine Muguruza available at and Karolina Pliskova .
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