DUBAI // Roger Federer will not be coming here to defend his Dubai Tennis Championship crown and will miss Rotterdam as well after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery to repair a torn meniscus.
The 17-time grand slam winner and a seven-time Dubai champion injured his knee a day after his loss to Novak Djokovic in the semi-final of the Australian Open and after flying home for tests in Switzerland, Federer discovered it was a torn meniscus. As a result, he has been forced out of the two tournaments on his February schedule, Rotterdam and Dubai.
“I am so disappointed to have to miss Rotterdam and Dubai as they are two of my favourite tournaments on the ATP World Tour,” Federer said in the statement issued by Tony Godsick, his agent at TEAM8.
“While this is an unfortunate setback, I feel grateful that up to now I have remained mostly healthy throughout my career. My doctors have ensured me that the surgery was a success and with proper rehabilitation, I will be able to return to the Tour soon.”
This will be the first time in six years Federer will miss the DDF Dubai Tennis Championship, where he has beaten Novak Djokovic twice in the last two years – in the 2014 semis and then the 2015 final.
Winner of the Rotterdam title in 2005 and 2012, Federer was to make his first appearance at the tournament since 2013 and tournament director Richard Krajicek conceded it was a blow for the event.
“First of all we are hoping for a speedy recovery for Roger,” Krajicek said in a statement. “From my personal experience I can tell that the recovery after this surgery can take time.
“Obviously, receiving this information yesterday evening is a major setback for us, as it is for the fans looking forward to his presence. We hope to have Roger back next year.”
Federer is expected to be in action at the Indian Wells Masters, which start from March 7.
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