It’s official, for the first time in his career Novak Djokovic will not play in the Miami Open which begins on Wednesday.
In a statement on social media today, Djokovic cited a bad elbow as the reason for his withdrawal.
“I have some very disappointing news to share with you regarding the Miami Open tournament,” Sharapova said. “My doctor has strongly advised against play because my elbow injury, that I keep carrying on for months, got worse in the past week. I will do everything in my power to recover and do all the necessary therapy to be able to return on court as soon as possible.
“Sadly, I won’t be able to defend my title in Miami this week. Believe me, it is as shocking to me, as it is to you. I had incredible run in Miami, I won there my first masters tournament and started my campaign towards the top of the world rankings. No wonder they say that in sport the biggest and most painful defeats come from injuries, and not from opponents. I am lucky that throughout my career I didn’t have many injuries, but I guess that all that I’ve been through physically in the past so many years did leave a mark on my body.
“I remain eternally grateful for all the love and support I receive from you. Thank you for believing in me #NoleFam”
Djokovic had won Miami the last three years, and six times overall, claiming his first Masters title as a 19-year-old in Miami in 2007 when he beat Guillermo Canas.
Djokovic will also drop 1,000 ranking points and fall further behind current No. 1 Andy Murray in the 52-week rankings. And he’ll also lose out on a chance to gain more points in the 2017 Race, which Roger Federer leads.
The withdrawals of Murray and Djokovic put Stan Wawrinka as the top seed. The draw is set to be released tomorrow afternoon.
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