Andy Murray withdraws from Australian Open over lingering hip problem

Andy Murray has withdrawn from the Australian Open because of a lingering hip injury.

The Briton, a five-time runner-up at Melbourne Park, was in doubt for the year’s first Grand Slam event after pulling out of this week’s Brisbane International.

It was confirmed Thursday that Murray, 30, would miss the Australian Open, which starts Jan. 15.

The three-time major champion and world No. 16 is returning home and may yet need surgery on his hip.

“Sadly I won’t be playing in Melbourne this year, as I am not yet ready to compete,” Murray said in a statement. “I’ll be flying home shortly to assess all the options, but I appreciate all the messages of support and I hope to be back playing soon.”

Murray last played competitively at Wimbledon in July before the hip injury ended his 2017 season.

His wait for a first Australian Open title will continue after runner-up finishes in 2010, ’11, ’13, ’15 and ’16.

Murray’s withdrawal follows that of Kei Nishikori, while Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic also are under injury clouds.

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