Nick Kyrgios has withdrawn from the Monte Carlo Rolex Masters, the first Masters 1000 tournament of the clay season, following in the footsteps of Gael Monfils, last year’s finalist, who withdrew from the tournament a few days ago.
The world number 15, who was a key part of Australia’s Davis Cup quarterfinal victory over the US over the weekend, will be replaced in the draw by clay court specialist Federico Delbonis. He will now make his 2017 clay court debut in Estoril, where he reached the last four in 2016.
No official reason for withdrawal
Kyrgios previously withdrew from his quarterfinal match at Indian Wells against Roger Federer due to illness, though there has so far been no official confirmation as to why he has withdrawn from Monte Carlo, having entered the draw for the first time in his career.
There were no apparent injury concerns for the Australian during the Davis Cup, where he recorded victories over John Isner and Sam Querrey to help secure Australia’s victory, so it may just be case of him wanting extra practice ahead of the change of surface.
Kyrgios has been replaced in the draw by Argentine Delbonis, who lost in the first round to Fernando Verdasco last year, though could well be dangerous on his strongest surface.
As well as Monfils, the Australian joins Australian Open champion Roger Federer and Kei Nishikori on the sidelines; neither of the two decided to enter the tournament.
Kyrgios returns to Estoril
With Monte Carlo now off his schedule, Kyrgios will start his clay court season in Estoril, an ATP 250 tournament in Portugal.
The tournament has been a successful one for him in the past, having reached the semifinal last year, losing to Nicolas Almagro, and reaching the final the year before, falling to Richard Gasquet; the Australian will be aiming for the first clay court title of his career when he returns later this month.