© Getty Images

Novak Djokovic won the last two titles at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open in Doha.

Djokovic Delays Start To 2018 Campaign

The Serbian is rehabbing a right elbow injury

Novak Djokovic has been forced to postpone the start of his 2018 season due to a right elbow injury, withdrawing from the Qatar ExxonMobil Open, which begins on 1 January in Doha. The two-time defending champion announced on his website that he will instead continue rehab to ensure a strong return to the ATP World Tour.

“Unfortunately, the situation with the elbow has not changed for better since yesterday. I still feel the pain,” Djokovic said. “I am sorry that I will not be able to play in front of my fans here. I have great memories of this tournament and the matches I played, like the final against Andy [Murray] from last year. The atmosphere at the stadium is always wonderful, the organisation is on the highest level, and I will surely miss it a lot.”

The former World No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings was hoping to defend back-to-back titles in Doha after missing six months due to injury, last appearing at Wimbledon.

“Only when I’m 100 per cent ready to play, will I be able to come back,” Djokovic said. “I hope it will be soon. I want to thank everyone for patience and understanding.”

More stories like this in: