More bad news on the health front for Milos Raonic.
The Canadian returned after a seven-week absence due to a wrist injury in Tokyo this week, and won his first round against Viktor Troicki.
But Thursday against Yuichi Sugita of Japan, he was broken in his opening service game – and then retired from the match.
The reason was a calf injury. Raonic also pulled out of next week’s Masters 1000 tournament in Shanghai.
Unusually for the Canadian, he skipped his mandatory post-match press conference.
He issued a statement through the ATP.
“I picked up a strain to the calf. It’s hard to know the extent of it, I’ll have to wait because it’s too soon to have an exact evaluation. It happened when the score was deuce. I felt a sharp pain at the back of my leg. I will head home now and get medical attention,” Raonic said in the statement.
“It’s been a difficult and frustrating year. I obviously wish I could have focused on tennis more rather than chasing help all the time.”
It’s yet another physical setback for a player who has had plenty of them in his career, most of them involving his hip and upper-leg area.
Woeful season at top of ATP
After his first-round match, the 26-year-old talked about how he felt the ATP Tour schedule was too demanding on the top players. He pointed out that the top five players in the year-end rankings last year – Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic, Stan Wawrinka, Kei Nishikori and himself – had missed extended periods.
Raonic was the only one of the five who hadn’t already pulled the plug on his 2017 season.
Now, he may well join them to make it unanimous.