The four-time Miami Open champion Roger Federer will not defend the title from March 24, withdrawing from the season’s first Masters 1000 event.
Roger hasn’t played since the last year’s Australian Open following knee issues and two surgeries in February and May.
The Swiss had to embrace the most extended break of his career, returning to the practice court in October and making small steps towards a complete recovery.
The 20-time Major champion will compete after almost 14 months at the next week’s Doha event, testing his skills and deciding wheater he would enter the ATP 500 tournament in Dubai seven days later or not.
After the desert swing, Roger will rest and skip the USA trip, handing the Miami Open crown to some of his rivals and losing those 1000 points he has been keeping for two years.
The Miami Open moved from Crandon Park to Hard Rock Stadium in 2019, and Federer was the inaugural champion at the new venue.
In the title match, Roger took down the defending champion John Isner 6-1, 6-4 in 63 minutes after a one-sided affair, dominating on both serve and return against the rival who barely managed to finish the match after struggling with a left foot injury.
Roger beat Daniil Medvedev, Kevin Anderson and Denis Shapovalov in commanding style to become the first player with 50 Masters 1000 finals.