Image Source : GETTY Novak Djokovic has withdrawn from the ongoing French Open due to a knee injury

Defending champion Novak Djokovic has withdrawn from the ongoing French Open due to a knee injury he sustained during the five-set comeback win against Francisco Cerundolo. Djokovic revealed after the match that he would go for scans after the match, which now have revealed a tear in the medial meniscus in his right knee and has forced him out of the tournament. Djokovic’s withdrawal has sent Casper Ruud directly into the semi-finals.

Djokovic blamed the slippery surface at the court for his injury and could be heard telling the physio, “I screwed up my knee. I’m slipping and sliding all the time.” Djokovic seemed to have tweaked something at the start of the second set and four games later, the Serbian complained to the tournament authority regarding the condition of the playing surface.

“I’m telling you as a player, it’s not OK.” When the official told Djokovic the grounds people felt the court was fine, the Serbian snapped, “They know better than me the court is good or not?” This was after Djokovic had asked for the court to be swept. Djokovic wasn’t sure of his participation after the Round of 16 match and his worst fears came true.

“I don’t know what will happen tomorrow – or after tomorrow, if I’ll be able to step out on the court and play,” the 37-year-old Djokovic had said on Monday. “You know, I hope so. Let’s see what happens.”

It was a long and draining five-setter which went on for four and a half hours but Djokovic prevailed in the end but alas he won’t be able to add a Grand Slam to his tally in France this time around and the injury has also put his participation in doubt.

Djokovic’s withdrawal has also meant that the Italian Jannik Sinner will become World No 1 after the tournament as he will reach the top of the ATP rankings irrespective of his performance in the rest of the tournament.