The heat has taken its first victim: Victoria Azarenka just collapsed on the Grandstand, and was removed from the court in a wheelchair. She was conscious when she left. Though the Grandstand is usually one of the courts that is usually shaded, the court is completely exposed to sun right now.
The woman’s no. 10 player was trailing 5-1 in the first set. She automatically had to retire from the match, eliminating her from the U.S. Open.
The early consensus in the press room seems to be that this was likely related to her fitness, and not exclusively a reflection of the heat out there. It’s just over 90 degrees now, and it was hotter at times yesterday.
UPDATE I: Jon Wertheim is reporting on his twitter feed that her collapse may not have to do with the heat, after all. If that’s true it would reflect the initial thoughts of some of the British reporters here in the press room who felt that heat wasn’t a factor (I sit near all these funny Brits!).
UPDATE II: Here’s a video of Azarenka collapsing (Please pardon the Super Mario Bros music).
UPDATE III: Wertheim is now reporting that she’s off the grounds and at the hospital.