Stefanos Tsitsipas Forced to Retire from ATP Masters Due to Back Injury
By Aurélie Sacchelli, Media365
Published on Tuesday, November 14, 2023 at 6:39 p.m.
Stefanos Tsitsipas, the Greek tennis player, was forced to retire from the ATP Masters after just three games against Holger Rune due to a debilitating back injury. As a result, Tsitsipas will not be able to compete in his last group match against Novak Djokovic on Thursday. In his place, Hubert Hurkacz will take on Djokovic.
This unfortunate turn of events marks the end of Tsitsipas’ fifth consecutive participation in the ATP Masters. The 25-year-old Greek, who won the tournament in 2019 in London, revealed that he had been struggling with back pain for several weeks, which ultimately led to his retirement during the match against Rune. Tsitsipas expressed his disappointment at not being able to finish the match and apologized to his fans and the spectators who came to support him.
Despite receiving medical clearance to play, Tsitsipas experienced severe discomfort on the court. He stated, “I did what I could to be ready for this match, but unfortunately, it didn’t work for me. It kills me not to be able to finish this tournament, the one I have been preparing for so long.”
Tsitsipas: “The tournament that means the most to me”
During a press conference, Tsitsipas provided further insight into the extent of his pain, saying, “I had difficulty with my movements. It’s difficult to participate in a match without being able to move properly. The pain was unbearable, especially when I was warming up my serve. At that point, I knew I might not be able to continue.”
This is not the first time Tsitsipas has faced such a setback at the Masters. In 2021, he was also forced to withdraw after playing just one match. Tsitsipas expressed his deep disappointment, stating, “It really hurts me a lot because it’s the tournament that means the most to me, including the Grand Slams. I’m not able to compete as I want.”
We can only hope for Tsitsipas’ swift recovery and his return at the beginning of the next season as he aims to qualify for the 2024 Masters.