Serbian tennis player Nenad Zimonjic will not be able to compete in Australian Open, the first grand slam tournament of the 2016, after hurting his thumb while on a skiing trip in Austria. It is the first time in 13 years that the former World No. 1 doubles player will not take part in a big tournament.
Since the 2002 Roland Garros, Zimonjic has played in all four grand slam tournaments. He was slated to make his 55th grand slam appearance in Melbourne next year where he was set to play doubles with Jelena Jankovic, but due to the fractured thumb that he sustained recently, the 39-year-old Serbian will not be able to make it. He was also set to partner with Novak Djokovic in Doha as part of his preparation for the Rio Olympics but will likely leave out the event as well.
Zimonjic revealed how he injured his thumb. He said that he accidentally bumped into someone on the skiing track, and his doctors advised him therapy for one month.
“I was planning to go to Doha to play doubles with Novak Djokovic and at the Australian Open with Jelena Jankovic in preparation for the Olympic Games,” Zimonjic said. “Now, it will not be possible.”
Zimonjic has competed in the doubles event of the Australian Open for 17 consecutive times since 1999. The Serbian’s best performance in Melbourne came in 2010, when he and his partner, Canadian doubles specialist Daniel Nestor, reached the finals before losing to the Bryan brothers 6-3 6-7(5) 6-3. This year, Zimonjic and Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi lost in the third round against ensuing runners-up Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut, 6-4 6-4.
The Australian Open 2016 takes place in Melbourne from Jan. 18 to Jan. 31, 2016 in 103rd edition of the tournament.