Friday, March 25, 2016 9:09 pm
Roger Federer withdrew from the ATP and WTA Miami Open on Friday with a stomach illness only hours before his scheduled return from a two-month layoff following left knee surgery.
The 34-year-old Swiss star, winner of a men’s record 17 Grand Slam singles titles but none since Wimbledon in 2012, was replaced by lucky loser Horacio Zeballos for a second-round match against Argentine compatriot Juan Martin Del Potro.
“Sorry for him, sorry for the tournament, sorry for the fans,” said long-time Federer rival Rafael Nadal when told the news.
“It’s good it’s a stomach problem and not the knee, but it’s the same for this tournament.”
Federer won at Miami in 2005 and 2006 but has not reached the final since. This marks the third time in four years he has missed the event.
World number three Federer, who appeared well Thursday in speaking with reporters, has not played since losing to eventual champion Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open semi-finals two months ago.