Roger Federer has decided not to compete and defend his title in this month’s Miami Open, in order for him to spend extra time preparing to “work his way back out on tour,” his agent told The Associated Press on Monday. Get the latest news here at OBN Tennis and why not explore splendid casino experience at 12BET? Get a 0.8% Cashback Bonus now!
The Miami Open will take place on March 22-April 4 Masters 1000 event, wherein Australian Open champions Novak Djokovic and Naomi Osaka are expected to take part along with Serena Williams and Rafa Nadal.
The 20-time Grand Slam champion has not competed in more than a year after having two operations on his right knee during last season.
Federer is scheduled to make his return to the tour next week in the ExxonMobil Open at Doha, Qatar. He posted a photo of himself on Twitter last Friday with the caption: “The countdown to Doha begins.”
That will be his first event since he reached the semifinals at the Australian Open in February 2020.
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Miami Open tournament director James Blake said he hopes Federer will return in 2021 to an event he has won four times, including two years ago.
“We certainly would have loved Roger to return to Miami to defend his title. However, as a former player, I understand that you need to tailor your travel and playing schedule to properly work your way back to 100 percent fitness when coming off an injury,” Blake said. “Roger is an incredible ambassador for the sport, so the longer he is able to play on tour, the better it is for all of tennis.”
Federer beaten John Isner 6-1, 6-4 in the 2019 final to win the Miami Open the last time it was held. The tournament was one of dozens that were called off last year when the professional tennis tours went on hiatus for several months because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Federer also won trophies at the hard-court event in 2005, 2006 and 2017.
He is currently No. 5 in the ATP rankings. He has spent 310 weeks total at No. 1, an ATP record tied by Novak Djokovic on Monday.
Federer’s 103 tour-level titles are the second-most in the professional era of men’s tennis, trailing only Jimmy Connors, who won 109.
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