Tennis: Ferrero set to quit French Open

24th May 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, May 23 (AFP) - Defending champion Juan Carlos Ferrero admitted on Sunday that it looks increasingly likely that his rib injury will force him to pull out of the French Open.

PARIS, May 23 (AFP) - Defending champion Juan Carlos Ferrero admitted on Sunday that it looks increasingly likely that his rib injury will force him to pull out of the French Open.

The Spaniard, whose season has been devastated by illness and injury, rated his chances of defending his title as "less then 50-50" when the second Grand Slam of 2004 gets underway at Roland Garros on Monday.

"I practised for an hour this morning but I didn't feel good," said the 23-year-old.

"I am still having problems. My ribs are very painful so I will make a decision on Monday. It's possible that I won't play."

Ferrero has played just six tournaments all season and has been out of action for a month since losing in the first round at the Monte Carlo Masters.

He suffered from chicken pox after the Australian Open and has seen his clay court campaign devastated first by a wrist injury and then his latest problem with his ribs which was caused when he fell over on court.

"It will be a very tough decision for me because I really want to play," said Ferrero who has also been forced to skip the season's other four Masters events in Indian Wells, Miami, Rome and Hamburg.

"I have taken painkilling injections but just moving around the court is painful.

"It affects everything - my serve, swing, forehand. Nothing is going right for me.

"Last year, I played unbelievable tennis. If I don't play here, it will be very sad. If the tournament was in two months' time, then it would be alright but this is not the right time for me."

© AFP

Subject: French news

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