Cincinnati: Rafael Nadal withdrew from the Cincinnati Masters for the second year in a row after polishing off his US Open preparation with a Montreal title on Sunday while women's singles winner of Rogers Cup Bianca Andreescu also pulled out from the tournament.
The announcement came a few hours after Nadal won his fifth Canadian title 6-3, 6-0 over Russian Daniil Medvedev.
The oft-injured Spaniard decided against playing any more before the August 26 start of the US Open in new York.
"I am very sorry to announce that I won't be playing in Cincinnati this year," Nadal posted on Facebook.
"No other reason than personally taking care of my body and trying to keep as healthy as I feel now." Nadal said he explained his position to Brazilian Cincinnati tournament director Andre Silva, whom he said understood.
"I'm sure the tournament will be a success and I wish him and his team all the best," Nadal said.
Nadal will go into the US Open with just one hardcourt warm-up, albeit his record-extending 35th Masters 1000 title.
His late withdrawal leaves the Cincinnati draw severely lopsided, with top seed Novak Djokovic and number three Roger Federer positioned in the top half.
Neither of the pair have played since their Wimbledon final a month ago won by Djokovic.
Federer is bidding for an eighth Cincinnati title while Djokovic is the defending champion.
Meanwhile, Canadian teenager Andreescu made history with a Toronto WTA title on Sunday and then also withdrew from Cincinnati Masters.
The 19-year-old who claimed the trophy when Serena Williams was unable to play more than four games before retiring with back spasms said "Thanks, but no thanks' to any extra exertion in the US Open run-up."
The first Canadian in half a century to win the home trophy said she did not want to taken any risks after missing more than two months – and Wimbledon – with shoulder problems before returning to action this week.
"I've never been there, so I'm really disappointed to withdraw from the tournament," said Andreescu, who was leading Williams 3-1 when the 23-time Grand Slam champion called it a day.
"I really have to listen to my body right now, this last week has not been easy on it," she added after beating three top 10 players in her hometown win that thrilled a nation.
Williams, 37, said she would make the trip to Cincinnati before deciding whether she would play.
"The most frustrating part is that I've had these awful spasms a lot in my career, actually," she said.
"They're incredibly painful, but it goes away after, like, 24, 36, maybe 48 hours, like clockwork.
"I do different treatments. I take a day off. But obviously, I didn't have 24 hours or plus to take off (in Toronto).
"The first phase is painful, to a point where I usually don't get out of bed. I'll have to wait and see."
Williams won Cincinnati in 2014 and 2015 but went out in the second round to Petra Kvitova last year.
Updated Date: Aug 12, 2019 11:55:04 IST