Federer pulls out of French Open after fourth round with Wimbledon hopes in mind

Roger Federer has pulled out of the French Open before his fourth round match.

He saw off German Dominik Koepfer in four sets on Saturday night but cast doubt over his future in the tournament.

The 39-year-old was due to take on Matteo Berrettini before a potential heavyweight quarter-final clash with Novak Djokovic.

But Federer has now decided to withdraw from Roland Garros amid concerns over his rehabilitation following knee surgery.

“After discussions with my team, I decided that I should withdraw from the French Open today,” he said.

“After two knee surgeries and over a year of rehabilitation it’s important that I listen to my body and make sure I don’t push myself too quickly on my road to recovery.

The 20-time Grand Slam winner is recovering from surgery

“I am thrilled to have gotten three matches under my belt. There is no greater feeling than being back on court.”

Tournament director, Guy Forget, said: “The Roland-Garros tournament is sorry about the withdrawal of Roger Federer, who put up an incredible fight last night.

“We were all delighted to see Roger back in Paris, where he played three high-level matches.

“We wish him all the best for the rest of the season.”

Federer said in the aftermath of his match with Koepfer, which ended at 12.45am local-time, that his tournament may have to be cut short to protect his body.

“I don’t know if I am going to play,” said the Swiss star.

“I have to decide whether or not to continue. Is it too risky to keep putting pressure on the knee? Is it a good time to rest?

“Every match I have to reassess the situation and see the next morning in what state I wake up and how my knee is doing.

“It may be even more true after a match as long as the one tonight.”

In the lead up to the tournament Federer had suggested that playing in Paris would help him prepare for Wimbledon, which he claimed was his “huge goal”

“Of course there are question marks all around my level right now,” he said. “We will find out a little bit more tomorrow, but in practice things have been going well so I’m happy there.

“When you come back from an injury you are anyway in a different place from everybody else. I’m excited about the comeback, that’s what my focus needs to be on and not about trying to be at the same level as Rafa (Nadal) and Novak (Djokovic) right now.

“I was happy that the knee didn’t feel any different from hard to clay so I expect the same to go from clay to grass. So far the clay has been good for me and of course I hope that it’s also going to help me for the grass.”

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