Dubai: Roger Federer has withdrawn from the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships which begin this weekend.
The Swiss star has undergone knee surgery in Switzerland and will be unable to defend his Dubai title, which he claimed last February, notching his 100th ATP title in the process.
Federer made a public statement on Twitter and revealed that he will be missing Dubai, Indian Wells tournament and the French Open.
"My right knee has been bothering me for a little while, I hoped it would go away, but after an examination and discussion with my team, I decided to have arthroscopic surgery in Switzerland yesterday," Federer wrote on Twitter.
"After the procedure, doctors confirmed that it was the right thing to have done and very confident of full recovery. As a result, I will, unfortunately, miss Dubai, Indian Wells, Bogota, Miami, and French Open. I am grateful for everyone's support. I cannot wait to be back playing again soon, see you on the grass," he added.
The 20-time Grand Slam winner was last seen in action in the Australian Open. He was defeated in the semi-finals by Novak Djokovic. Djokovic went on to win the Australian Open.
“We are very disappointed that Roger Federer, our defending champion, has been forced to withdraw from the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships this year,” said Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of Dubai Duty Free. “His victory here last year, the 100th title of his career, was a significant milestone, and he went on to enjoy another outstanding season. We wish him well in his recovery and look forward to not only watching his progress during the rest of the season but welcoming him back to Dubai in 2021.”
Tournament Director Salah Tahlak added: “We wish Roger Federer the very best, and despite this news, we still have a fantastic field including world No. 1 and Wimbledon and Australian Open Champion Novak Djokovic and last year’s finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas as well as Gael Monfils to name a few. In the meantime, WTA week is going very well with great crowds at last night’s match to see top seed Simona Halep play Tunisian Ons Jabeur.”