Andy Murray defends Roger Federer’s ‘sensible decision’ to withdraw from French Open to aid recovery

Andy Murray has jumped to Roger Federer’s defence following the 20-time Grand Slam winner’s decision to pull out of the French Open, saying “it makes sense”.

World No 8 Federer was due to face Matteo Berrettini in the last 16 at Roland Garros, but he withdrew from the tournament on Sunday on the back of his hard-fought third-round win over Dominik Koepfer.

‘It’s important that I listen to my body,’ says Roger Federer as he confirms French Open withdrawal

The 39-year-old was playing only his sixth ATP Tour match in 17 months after undergoing two knee operations in 2020.

Murray expressed his admiration for Federer during his three-hour 35 minute clash against Koepfer on Saturday, saying how “inspirational” the great was.

On the back of Federer’s withdrawal announcement, one fan replied that “there is something distasteful about “using” the French Open to get fit. Seems disrespectful to other players in the draw.”

However, Murray backed the Swiss icon’s decision to look after his body following such a long time away from the game.

“In Basketball, football etc when returning from injury players are given reduced minutes to build up their fitness. In tennis you don’t have that luxury of just playing a set in first match then 2 sets the next etc and building up that way,” the three-time Grand Slam winner wrote.

“Id argue that it’s quite risky to play multiple 4hr matches in a row in your 2nd tournaments back in 18 months so to me it makes sense to be reactive based on how your body feels, length of matches etc. Sensible decision from him.”

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