Rafael Nadal has pulled out of this week’s Paris Masters and he will now lose his place at the top of the world rankings to Novak Djokovic. The Spaniard has not played competitively since being forced to retire from his semi-final match at the US Open due to a knee injury, but he was expected to make his return in the French capital this week.
Nadal had been due to face compatriot Fernando Verdasco in the second round of the Masters 1000 event on Wednesday, but he has now withdrawn from the competition, citing an abdominal injury.
The 32-year-old’s withdrawal means Djokovic will return to the top of the world rankings regardless of how he performs in Paris.
The Serbian booked his place in the third round with a straight-sets victory over Joao Sousa on Tuesday and he remains on course to win what would be a third successive Masters 1000 event title, following on from his victories in Cincinnati and Shanghai earlier this year.
Nadal is not the only player that has withdrawn from this week’s tournament, as Milos Raonic has pulled out of his second-round match with Roger Federer due to an injury to his right elbow.