KYLE EDMUND is out of the Australian Open due to a persistent knee injury.
The British No2 formally withdrew from the main draw of next month’s event as he is not fully fit.
Kyle Edmund was forced to withdraw from the Australian Open due to an ongoing knee injuryCredit: Getty Images – Getty
Knee issues have dogged Edmund over the past few years and he did not compete at the rescheduled French Open last autumn.
His form on the ATP circuit has been wretched, just one win in seven matches since the first UK lockdown last March.
He beat Alexander Bublik of Kazahkstan in the US Open first round before losing to Novak Djokovic.
World No48 Edmund, who turned 26 last Friday, said: “Unfortunately my knee is not quite ready to compete in the upcoming Australia swing.
“I hope to be back competing soon.”
Edmund enjoyed his best season in 2018, reaching the semi-finals of the Australian Open for his top Grand Slam performance.
He then reached the third round at both the French Open and Wimbledon in the same year.
Heather Watson will head to Australia now to begin her two-week quarantine period.
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The British No2 will focus on next month’s Australian Open, which starts on February 8, after losing on Saturday in the second round of the Abu Dhabi Open in the UAE.
The Guernsey star, 28, was beaten 7-5 6-7 6-3 by Russian No17 seed Ekaterina Alexandrova in the Middle East.
Stars have to observe a mandatory 14-day hotel stay to avoid the spread of Covid-19 but can leave their rooms for up to five hours per day, with two of those spent on the court training.
Watson’s plan is to hit with Jo Konta for the first week and then the duo will practice with American teenager Amanda Anisimova and Czech star Petra Kvitova, the two-time Wimbledon champion.
The Brit’s best Grand Slam performance came at the 2018 Australian Open, where he reached the semi-finalsCredit: AP:Associated Press