Despite his best efforts at rehabbing an ongoing hip injury, former world No. 1 and 2012 US Open champion Andy Murray has been forced to withdraw from the Australian Open.
"Sadly I won't be playing in Melbourne this year, as I am not yet ready to compete," said Murray in a statement posted on the tournament's official Twitter account. "I'll be flying home shortly to assess all the options."
Murray has not played since a quarterfinal loss to Sam Querrey last year at Wimbledon. He attempted to compete in last year's US Open but was forced to withdraw from the tournament before his scheduled first-round match against Tennys Sandgren. The Brit was also in the draw for this week's ATP World Tour event in Brisbane, Australia, but the hip injury caused him to pull out before his opening-round match against Ryan Harrison.
He has long opted against surgery, deciding instead for a more conservative approach of rest and physical therapy. However, Murray admitted that he will be forced to consider more drastic measures as he looks to get back on tour as soon as possible.
"Obviously continuing rehab is one option and giving my hip more time to recover. Surgery is also an option, but the chances of recovery are not as high as I would like, which has made this my secondary option, and I would like to avoid that," he wrote in a recent Instagram post. "This is something I may have to consider, but let's hope not."
Murray is the second top player to withdraw from the Australian Open in less than 24 hours, with Kei Nishikori pulling out after declaring he wasn't yet fit enough to sustain five-set matches.
The Australian Open begins on Jan. 15.