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Gael Monfils, France's top tennis player, withdraws from French Open

Gael Monfils, France's top tennis player, withdraws from French Open
Gael Monfils of France sustained a right heel injury and needs surgery, which will keep him off the tennis court for at least two upcoming tournaments. File Photo by Ray Stubblebine/UPI | License Photo

May 17 (UPI) -- Gael Monfils, the top-ranked French tennis player, withdrew from the French Open because he needs surgery on his right heel, the No. 22 player in the ATP rankings announced on social media.

Monfils announced the move Monday on Instagram and Twitter. The 2022 French Open started Monday with qualifiers and runs through June 5 at Roland Garros in Paris. Monfils also withdrew from a warmup tournament in Lyon, France.

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"Hi all, I regret to inform you that I am forced to withdraw from Open Parc de Lyon and the French Open next week," Monfils wrote on his social media platforms. "I have been bothered by a calcaneal spur since Monte-Carlo at my right heel, which prevents me from moving properly on court.

"I have decided to undergo a small procedure this week to treat the issue before returning to competitive play. I will keep you updated about my progress when I have more news."

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Monfils, 35, lost to No. 1 Novak Djokovic of Serbia in straight sets in the round of 32 at the Madrid Open on May 3 in Madrid.

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He reached the quarterfinals earlier this season at the 2022 Australian Open. His singles semifinal appearances in the 2008 French Open and 2016 U.S. Open were his deepest runs at Grand Slam tournaments.

Monfils and his wife -- No. 32 Elina Svitolina -- also announced last weekend that they are expecting a baby girl in October.

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No. 45 Hugo Humbert is the second-highest ranked French player in the ATP rankings. No. 40 Alize Cornet is the top French player in the WTA rankings.

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