Roger Federer will miss the Australia Open in February 2021 as he continues his recovery from a knee injury, his agent has confirmed.
The 20-time Grand Slam champion missed the majority of 2020 through injuries.
And it appears this season will start much the same after Federer’s agent Tony Godsick revealed the latest news on Sunday.
Instead, the 39-year-old is working on a calendar for the year, though it will mean the Australian Open will come too soon – despite itself being delayed.
Godsick said: “Roger has decided not to play the 2021 Australian Open.
“He has made strong progress in the last couple of months with his knee and his fitness.
“However, after consultation with his team, he decided that the best decision for him in the long run is to return to competitive tennis after the Australian Open.
“I will start discussions this coming week for tournaments that begin in late February and then start to build a schedule for the rest of the year.”
It was the 2020 Australia Open where Federer last was seen in action at a Grand Slam, a tournament that showed the tennis star in clear pain as he lost to Novak Djokovic in the semi-finals.
The Serbian would go on to win the competition as just weeks after the Swiss Maestro revealed he would need an operation on his knee.
That would rule him out for four months but upon his return Federer was back under the knife to undergo surgery for a second time in a year.
The Australian Open is traditionally the first Grand Slam of the season and the tennis legend had plans to compete in this one.
But he has now ruled himself out of that competition, a decision that was advised by coaches Severin Luthi and Ivan Ljubicic and fitness coach Pierre Paganini.
Meanwhile, former British No 1 Greg Rusedski reckons Federer has his sights set on Wimbledon.
He told Express Sport: “Federer you think has got one more year left, possibly two but realistically one more year, and his focus is going to be Wimbledon and the Olympics, those will be his two priorities.
“I don’t think he’s got a shot to win the Australian Open or the French, those will be big asks for him. He can still have good runs there but won’t win them.
“Wimbledon, that’s where he’s aiming at. He’s won eight titles there. The points against Novak, that must be the most heartbreaking loss of his career.”