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Andy Murray withdraws from match with Novak Djokovic at Madrid Open due to illness

Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic were due to meet each other for the 37th time on tour and first in five years; Murray had qualified for last 16 after beating Dominic Thiem and Denis Shapovalov; Brit accepted wildcard after initially intending to skip clay-court season

Last Updated: 05/05/22 10:35am

Andy Murray has withdrawn from his match with Novak Djokovic at the Madrid Open due to illness

Andy Murray has withdrawn from his last-16 clash with Novak Djokovic at the Madrid Open due to illness.

A statement on the tournament’s Twitter feed read: “Unfortunately, Andy Murray is unable to take to the Manolo Santana Stadium due to illness.”

Murray, who defeated Dominic Thiem and Denis Shapovalov to reach round three, was set to face Djokovic for the 37th time on tour and first since 2017.

The Scot had said after his three-set victory over Shapovalov he “shouldn’t have a chance” against Djokovic, claiming “he’s world No 1 and I’ve got a metal hip”.

Djokovic has now advanced to the quarter-finals in Spain

Djokovic has now advanced to the quarter-finals in Spain

Murray’s withdrawal means Djokovic has advanced to the quarter-finals, where he will face either Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz or fellow Serb Dusan Lajovic.

The 34-year-old had accepted a wildcard for the Madrid Open, having initially planned to skip the entire clay-court season in order to prepare for the grass-court campaign.

Murray and Djokovic were due to be first on court on Thursday but that spot will now be taken by British No 2 Dan Evans, who takes on Andrey Rublev.

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