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Federer pulls out of French Open, vows return
by Wayde Brown
Swiss tennis star Roger Federer has pulled out of the upcoming French Open, a move that ends his record of appearing in 65 consecutive grand slam tournaments dating back to 2000.
Federer, who had a knee operation this year but returned to play at the Monte Carlo Masters in early April, has been dealing with a back problem that has limited his schedule in recent weeks.
In a message on Facebook, the 17-time major champion said “I am still not 100 percent and feel I might be taking an unnecessary risk by playing in this event before I am really ready. This decision was not easy to make, but I took it to ensure I could play the remainder of the season and help to extend the rest of my career.”
The third-ranked Federer, who won the French open in 2009, has not missed a major since the 1999 US Open.
His withdrawal will have a significant impact on the draw as nine-times champion Rafael Nadal, ranked five in the world, will now move to fourth seed while defending champion Stanislas Wawrinka is bumped up to three.
Spaniard Nadal could have faced world number one Novak Djokovic or second seed Andy Murray, as early as the quarter-finals. That scenario has now been avoided
Federer, who has been troubled by back problems over the past few years, said he was determined to recover full fitness and prepare for Wimbledon.
“I remain as motivated and excited as ever and my plan is to achieve the highest level of fitness before returning to the ATP World Tour for the upcoming grass court season,” said the Swiss, who owns seven Wimbledon titles.
“I am sorry for my fans in Paris but I very much look forward to returning to Roland Garros in 2017.”
News Credit: IrieFM | Read here http://iriefm.net/federer-pulls-out-of-french-open-vows-return/