WATCH: Gael Monfils and Andy Murray share touching moment at Indian Wells

 Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

Gael Monfils will finally make his comeback this week following nearly seven months on the sidelines and he shared a heartwarming moment with Andy Murray ahead of practice for the Indian Wells Open.

The Frenchman has not played a competitive match since he re-injured his foot at the Canadian Open in mid-August, but he will at long last return to action as he is in the main draw for ATP Masters 1000 Indian Wells event.

He hit the practice courts at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden on Monday and bumped into three-time Grand Slam winner Murray while the former world No 1 was doing some drills of his own.

The pair shared a long hug and chatted for a few minutes before they went about their business again.

World No 210 Monfils, who used his protected ranking for entry into the California tournament, then took part in a practice session with ninth seed Hubert Hurkacz.

The 36-year-old will face Australian Jordan Thompson in the first round on Wednesday and should he come through that clash then he will take on second seed Stefanos Tsitsipas in the second round.

However, Monfils will be the first to admit that he can’t rush things after such a lengthy period on the sidelines.

The year 2022 was one filled with mixed emotions for him as he won the Adelaide International at the start of the year and also became a father as his wife Elina Svitolina gave birth to their daughter Skai in October, but he also had an injury-filled campaign.

He was forced to skip the clay-court season due to a heel injury and the problem also kept him out of Wimbledon before he returned at the Canadian Open. However, he re-injured his foot and then missed the US Open and the beginning of the 2023 season.

Although he is on the wrong side of 30, Monfils has made it clear that he doesn’t plan to retire in the next year or so as he wants to play at next year’s Paris Olympics, saying “I would not like to miss them [Olympics], it would be my last one.

“I hope that 2024 would not be my last year but maybe the one after that.”

Ahead of his return, enjoy a Tennis TV compilation “50 MONSTER Gael Monfils Forehands ”

READ MORE: Elina Svitolina and Gael Monfils share baby Skai’s first TikTok and cute parenting pictures

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