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Novak Djokovic pulls out of U.S. Open tune-up event in Cincinnati

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Novak Djokovic pulls out of U.S. Open tune-up event in Cincinnati
Novak Djokovic won the 2020 Western & Southern Open, but will skip the 2021 tournament so he can recover from the 2020 Summer Games. File Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 10 (UPI) -- Novak Djokovic will not compete in the upcoming Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati so he can physically recover from his run at the Summer Olympics, the No. 1 men's tennis player announced.

The Serbian announced his withdrawal from the U.S. Open tune-up tournament Monday on social media.

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"I wanted to share with you that I'm taking a bit longer to recover after quite a physically taxing journey from the Australian Open up to Tokyo," Djokovic tweeted. "Sadly, this means I won't be ready to compete in Cincinnati this year so I'll be turning my focus to the U.S. Open and spending more time with my family.

"Can't wait to see you in New York soon."

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Djokovic will attempt to complete a rare calendar-year Grand Slam at the U.S. Open, which begins later this month. He won the Australian Open in February, the French Open in June and Wimbledon in July.

Djokovic came up short in his quest to complete a rare Golden Slam -- four Grand Slam titles and a gold medal in the same year -- when he lost to Germany's Alexander Zverev in the semifinals in Tokyo last month.

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The Western & Southern Open is one of four ATP hard court tournaments played before the U.S. Open. The tournament runs from Sunday through Aug. 22 in Cincinnati. The Winston Salem Open will be held the week before the U.S. Open.

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The U.S. Open, the final Grand Slam event of the year, runs from Aug. 30 through Sept. 12 at the UTSA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, N.Y.

Djokovic, 34, won U.S. Open singles titles in 2011, 2015 and 2018. He can pass Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal for the most Grand Slams in men's tennis history if he claims his 21st major title there.

Rod Laver is the last man to win all four Grand Slams in the same year, in 1969. Steffi Graf is last player to do it, in 1988, when she also completed the only Golden Slam.

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Djokovic won the 2020 Western & Southern Open, which was moved from Cincinnati to Flushing Meadows due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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