Former world number one Andy Murray has pulled out of the Australian Open after failing to recover from a hip injury, tournament organisers said on Thursday.
The three-time grand slam winner has not played a competitive match since Wimbledon last July and despite coming through a one-set exhibition in Abu Dhabi last week, the Briton has decided to focus on rehabilitation.”Sadly I won`t be playing in Melbourne this year, as I am not yet ready to compete,” Murray, a five-time Australian Open runner-up, said in a statement. I`ll be flying home shortly to assess all the options but I appreciate all the messages of support and I hope to be back playing soon.” Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley said: “We are fully aware that Andy has been going through a difficult period with his hip and that he`s done everything possible to prepare for the Australian summer. “Personally, I also know that Andy loves tennis and would do anything to play. This is a very hard decision for Andy and we totally respect it.” Murray has slipped to 16th in the world rankings since being beaten by American Sam Querrey in the Wimbledon quarter-finals.