Chennai: Defending champion Janko Tipsarevic from Serbia has withdrawn from the Aircel ATP Chennai Open Tennis tournament due to a rupture on the heel tendon he sustained in Valencia in October this year.
The World No.36 said in a statement here that he is still to recover fully from the two-month-old injury.
The 29-year-old Tipsarevic has been a regular at the Aircel Chennai Open and one of the tournament's favourites.
Tipsarevic had earlier confirmed his presence at the $450,000 tournament to be held here from Dec 30 to Jan 5 and kick-start his new season.
Tipsarevic had a dream start to 2013 when he captured the fourth ATP World Tour title of his career, defeating Bautista Agut (Spain) 3-6, 6-1, 6-3 in the final here.
The injury he sustained at the Valencia Open forced him to pull out after just three games against Marcel Granollers. Following this, the Serb was also forced to withdraw from the Davis Cup final against the Czech Republic.
Speaking about his withdrawal from the Aircel Chennai Open 2014, Tipsarevic said: "I have had a difficult three months after injuring my heel. I felt I would recover well in time for the Aircel Chennai Open but regret to say that I will not be able to take part in the tournament.
"I apologise to fans who have always supported me and waited to watch me play during matches there. Chennai was always my favourite tournament to start the new season. I really look forward to recovering quickly and getting back to playing tennis soon."