Rafael Nadal has officially withdrawn from the US Open on Monday due to a right wrist injury that forced him out of competition several weeks ago.
The world No. 2 had previously withdrawn himself from title defenses in Toronto and Cincinnati but held off on announcing his pullout until he was certain he could no longer compete at the season’s final Grand Slam event.
“I am very sorry to announce I won’t be able to play at this year’s US Open. I am sure you understand that it is a very tough moment for me since it is a tournament I love and where I have great memories from fans, the night matches, so many things…
“[There is] not much more I can do right now, other than accept the situation and, as always in my case, work hard in order to be able to compete at the highest level once I am back.”
Nadal was the defending champion at the US Open last year, as he defeated now world No. 1 Novak Djokovic 6-2, 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 to lift his second title at Flushing Meadows.
This marks the sixth Grand Slam event that Nadal has been forced to withdraw from during his storied career. He is also the first player not to defend his US Open title since Juan Martin del Potro withdrew from the 2010 Open with a wrist injury as well.
Nadal’s exit means that Joao Sousa will be seeded in the main draw of the tournament, while Andy Murray will now get a Top 8 seeding at the event.
The US Open is scheduled to begin Monday, Aug. 25.