Andy Murray out of Queen’s with abdominal strain and faces race to be fit for Wimbledon

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Andy Murray needed treatment for the injury during the Stuttgart Open final on Tuesday (Bernd Wei’brod/dpa via AP) (AP)
Andy Murray needed treatment for the injury during the Stuttgart Open final on Tuesday (Bernd Wei’brod/dpa via AP) (AP)

Andy Murray has been forced to withdraw from the Queen’s Club Championships due to an abdominal strain, in what is a blow to the 35-year-old’s Wimbledon preparations.

Murray was hampered by abdominal pain in his Stuttgart Open final defeat to Matteo Berrettini on Sunday and after having the injury checked upon returning to London, has taken the decision to pull out of the grass-court tournament as a precaution.

“After having a scan this afternoon, an abdominal injury means I won’t be fit to compete at Queen’s this year,” Murray said. “The tournament means a lot to me, and it’s disappointing not to compete, especially after playing some good matches on the grass already.”

The five-time Queen’s champion warned that he had played “the most matches in two weeks since 2016” in reaching the Stuttgart final, as well as the Surbiton Trophy semi-finals last week.

Murray had hoped to play at Queen’s, with the tournament a traditional pre-Wimbledon warm-up event, and a return to the sidelines ahead of the start of the Championships at the All England Club in two weeks’ time will inevitably raise concerns about his fitness.

The former World No 1 had been in impressive form in reaching his first grass-court final since his last Wimbledon title six years ago. After beating Stefanos Tsitsipas and Nick Kyrgios, Murray has also returned to the world’s top 50 and a run at Queen’s could have resulted in the two-time Wimbledon champion receiving a seeded draw at the Championships.

Murray had been handed a tough draw at Queen’s, with a first-round match against the World No 32 Lorenzo Sonego scheduled to take place on Tuesday. If Murray had progressed, a rematch with defending Queen’s champion Berrettini or an all-British match against Dan Evans would have followed in the second round.

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