Injured Japanese star Kei Nishikori pulled out of the Australian Open on Thursday, whereas Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray, each former world primary, are uncertain.
Djokovic says he’ll take a look at his drawback elbow at an exhibition earlier than deciding whether or not to play.
Andy Murray, can also be struggling and withdrew from this week’s Brisbane International as he works to beat a proper hip damage which has sidelined him since Wimbledon.
The Scot raised the prospect this week of surgical procedure, however holds out hope of enjoying in Melbourne, saying he’ll resolve by the weekend whether or not to remain in Australia or fly house.
Asian primary Nishikori has not performed competitively since final August after struggling a torn tendon in his proper wrist throughout a observe session at Cincinnati.
He mentioned he nonetheless wasn’t prepared for a gruelling Grand Slam marketing campaign.
“I am very sorry to announce that I will miss the Aussie Open this year,” he mentioned on his web site of the opening main of the yr, beginning in Melbourne on January 15.
“The Aussie Open is my favourite Slam … it’s my ‘home’ Slam,” he added.
“It’s the Slam that takes unimaginable care of the gamers and their groups, and it hurts that I must miss it this yr.
“My rehab is going well but I am just not ready 100 percent to come back yet in best of five set matches.”
The writing was on the wall for Nishikori, who additionally withdrew from Brisbane.
The 28-year-old, who reached a profession excessive world quantity 4 in 2015, mentioned in November he had chosen rehabilitation over surgical procedure to restore the harm and was focusing on a return to motion in Australia.
His no-show is a serious blow for the favored Japanese participant, who concluded his 2017 season with a 30-13 match file.
The winner of 11 ATP Tour titles, he made the fourth spherical of the Australian Open final yr, shedding in 5 units to eventual champion Roger Federer, who, aged 36, is likely one of the few high names to be totally match.
Nishikori just isn’t the one main participant combating damage, with a who’s who of the highest names within the sport battling to be match for Melbourne Park.
Former world primary Djokovic hasn’t performed since a proper elbow subject compelled him to stop Wimbledon within the quarter-finals in July.
He has already cancelled scheduled appearances at an exhibition in Abu Dhabi and the Qatar Open, and mentioned he’ll take a look at the damage subsequent week on the Kooyong Classic in Melbourne and a Tie Break Tens event in the identical metropolis.
“Novak is travelling to Australia where he will take part in two exhibition tournaments,” mentioned an announcement on 12-time Grand Slam winner’s web site early Thursday.
“After the two events, the decision will be made about his participation at the first Grand Slam of the season, the Australian Open, where ‘Nole’ has been crowned champion six times.”
Also getting back from damage however set to play on the Grand Slam are Stan Wawrinka and Milos Raonic.
World primary Rafael Nadal, the reigning French Open and US Open champion, pulled out of Brisbane with a knee damage, however the Spaniard has mentioned he nonetheless intends to be on courtroom on the Australian Open.