Injured Murray withdraws from Brisbane International

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—File Photo


BRISBANE: Andy Murray has withdrawn from the Brisbane International because of a right hip complaint that has kept him on the sidelines since July.

The former No. 1-ranked Murray had been scheduled to play his first match on Thursday, but notified organizers he was pulling out after failing to practice on Tuesday.

Murray was seeded No. 2 in Brisbane, where he’d been expecting to play his first competitive match since a quarterfinal loss at Wimbledon.

“I came here with every intention of making a strong start to the year, but sadly my team and I don’t feel that I’m where I need to be just yet to compete at the highest level,” Murray, a two-time Brisbane International champion, said in a statement.

The 30-year-old British player plans to stay in Brisbane to continue preparations for the Australian Open, which starts Jan. 15 in Melbourne and where he has been runner-up five times.

He joined top-ranked Rafael Nadal, who pulled out last week in a bid to continue his recovery from injury, as notable withdrawals from the season-opening event in Brisbane.

Murray spent 41 weeks at No. 1 in the rankings until last August, but slipped to a year-end No. 16 because of his prolonged absence. —AP