Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 16 October 2019

Roger Federer disappointed to pull out of Italian Open with right leg injury

Former world No 1 was making his comeback to clay after two years

Former world No 1 Roger Federer has won the French Open title once in his career - in 2009. Tiziana FABI / AFP
Former world No 1 Roger Federer has won the French Open title once in his career - in 2009. Tiziana FABI / AFP

World No 3 Roger Federer pulled out of the Italian Open before his quarter-final match on Friday with a right leg injury.

Federer, a four-time Rome finalist, had been due to meet Greek eighth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas for a place in the semi-finals.

The Swiss 20-time grand slam winner was playing in Rome to prepare for his return to the French Open for the first time since 2015.

"I am disappointed that I will not be able to compete today," Federer said. "I am not 100 percent physically and after consultation with my team, it was determined that I not play.

"Rome has always been one of my favourite cities to visit and I hope to be back next year."

Federer had been on court nearly four hours on Thursday as competitors played two matches after rain delays midweek.

The 37-year-old saved two match points to win through 2-6, 6-4, 7-6 against Borna Coric to advance to the quarter-finals after earlier easing to a straight sets win over Portgual's Joaa Suosa.

The former world No 1 had been a late addition to the Rome tournament as he sought clay-court practice ahead of his bid to add to his lone French Open title in 2009.

Tsitsipas will play either defending champion Rafael Nadal or Fernando Verdasco for a place in the final.

Updated: May 17, 2019 04:45 PM

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