Roger Federer will not participate in upcoming hard court tournaments in Toronto and Cincinnati due to problems with his surgically repaired knee, an announcement that raises questions about his status for the US Open.
The absences of Federer, who turns 40 on Sunday, were announced separately by the organizers of the two events.
This news comes after the 20-time Grand Slam champion’s decision not to participate in the Tokyo Olympics after saying he had experienced “a setback” to his knee during the season on grass pitches.
Federer has not competed since losing in the Wimbledon quarter-finals to Hubert Hurkacz on July 8.
Toronto’s tournament starts on Monday and Cincinnati on August 16. Such events are traditionally the first two opportunities to prepare for the US Open, the last Grand Slam tournament of the year and which is scheduled to kick off on August 30 in New York.
Federer has won the Cincinnati tournament seven times and has two titles in Canada.
Toronto tournament organizers announced the absence of other competitors on Thursday: Alexander Zverev, a gold medalist at the Tokyo Games; Matteo Berrettini, Wimbledon runner-up; Milos Raonic and Pablo Carreño Busta. Novak Djokovic had reported his withdrawal from the event last month.
Federer underwent two right knee surgeries in 2020 and spent more than a full year between games. He returned to Grand Slam activities at the French Open in late May and withdrew from that tournament after three victories, arguing that he wanted to rest to be ready for the grass-court circuit – especially Wimbledon.
Before action began at the All England club at the end of June, Federer was asked about the Olympics, to which the Swiss replied that he would wait until after Wimbledon to decide his game schedule. (AP)