Matteo Berrettini admits he’s ‘not quite ready’ after confirming French Open absence

Matteo Berrettini looks on before a match in Miami 2024
Matteo Berrettini has pulled out of the French Open.

Matteo Berrettini has become the latest player to withdraw from the French Open after admitting his body was “not quite ready” for action at Roland Garros.

2021 Wimbledon finalist Berrettini has been plagued by injury issues in recent seasons, with the former world No 6 currently down at 96th in the ATP Rankings.

A former quarter-finalist in Paris, the clay court season started on a hugely positive note for the Italian, who picked up his eighth ATP title in Marrakech – a first tour title in almost two years.

But he then lost in the opening round of the Monte Carlo Masters the following week and then withdrew from further Masters 1000 events in Madrid and Rome.

And, writing on his Instagram story this morning, Berrettini confirmed that he would skip the French Open, having also withdrawn from the tournament in 2022 and 2023.

He wrote: “Despite training at an increasingly high level, my team and I feel I am not quite ready for multiple five set matches in row. I will wait to make my return on grass.

“Thank you for your continued support. I’m nearly there, just need a little more time.”

Berrettini’s decision to withdraw may well have been a wise one, with arguably the strongest – and most crucial – part of his season losing.

The Italian is incredibly comfortable on grass courts, highlighted by his Wimbledon run three years ago, and will be looking to rediscover his best form on the surface this season.

Berrettini won back-to-back titles at the ATP 500 Queen’s Club event in 2021 and 2022 and also won the Stuttgart title in 2022 – off the back of a French Open withdrawal.

But there will be some pressure on him come Wimbledon this year, with a not-insignificant chunk of points to defend at the All England Club.

After missing the 2022 event due to covid, Berrettini returned to SW19 in 2023 and impressed on his way to the fourth round, beating Alex de Minaur and Alexander Zverev before losing to eventual winner Carlos Alcaraz.

Likely to be unseeded at the event this year, the Italian will be at the mercy of the draw gods and will look to earn a strong rankings cushion at the grass events leading into the third major of the season.

Berrettini is not the only high-profile player to withdraw from the French Open before the draw is made on Thursday, with WTA world No 5 Jessica Pegula also confirming her absence.

2023 women’s runner-up Karolina Muchova is another notable absentee, having not played this year due to wrist surgery.

Read More: Jessica Pegula announces ‘super safe’ French Open decision