Andy Murray onttrek hom aan wedstryd teen wêreld nr 1 Novak Djokovic by die Madrid Ope net 'n uur voor wedstryd weens siekte – in what would have been Brit’s highest-profile match in years
The pair were set to face off for the 37th time on tour in their first clash in over five years in the round-of-16 contest on the clay, but 34-year-old Murray has pulled out while en route to the tournament venue.
A statement on the tournament’s twitter said: 'Ongelukkig, Andy Murray is unable to take to the Manolo Santana Stadium due to illness.
Andy Murray has withdrawn from his match against Novak Djokovic in Madrid due to illness
Murray’s withdrawal hands the Serb a free passage to the quarter-finals of the Madrid Open
‘We wish you a speedy recovery! In plaas daarvan, Andrey Rublev and Daniel Evans will open the day’s play on centre court.’
Britse nr 2 Evans will instead take to the court to take on Russian player Rublev, starting at 11am (BST).
Murray accepted a wild card into the event having reversed his original decision – made due to concerns as to how his body would react on the red stuff – to skip the clay court swing.
Murray accepted a wild card into the event having reversed his original decision – made due to concerns as to how his body would react on the red stuff – to skip the clay court swing
Yet the former world No 1 had impressed in his first two outings in the Spanish capital.
He beat Grand Slam winner Dominic Thiem in the first round before upsetting world No 18 Denis Shapovalov in three sets to set up a meeting with Djokovic.
The two-time Wimbledon champion’s withdrawal hands the Serb a free passage to the quarter-finals where he will face either Hubert Hurkacz or Dusan Lajovic.