Defending French Open champion Rafael Nadal has announced that he will miss the upcoming Grand Slam tournament due to his troublesome hip injury.
The 36-year-old - who has won a record 14 titles at Roland-Garros - has been out of action since sustaining the issue at the Australian Open, where he lost to Mackenzie McDonald in round two.
Nadal pulled out of the Indian Wells Masters and Miami Open events earlier this year with the problem, and he called a press conference on Thursday to announce that he would be unable to defend his French Open title too.
The 22-time Grand Slam winner - who has now dropped to 14th in the ATP rankings - also confessed that he would likely remain sidelined for several months, ending his hopes of playing at Wimbledon, and he believes that 2024 will be the final year of his professional career.
"Thank you for being here. We're here today for various reasons. The first is that the hip injury that I picked up in Australia has not improved how I would have liked. We've been working really hard every day to try and make it better and towards certain goals, but ultimately I won't be able to play at Roland Garros," Nadal told reporters.
"After many years playing there, you can imagine how much of a difficult decision it's been for me. This isn't a decision I've made, it's a decision my body has made. I'm not going to be playing for the next few months."
Nadal defeated Casper Ruud in straight sets to win his 22nd and most recent major honour at the 2022 French Open, and news of his withdrawal comes after Wimbledon finalist Nick Kyrgios pulled out with a foot injury, which he apparently sustained during a robbery at his home in Canberra.