Andy Murray WITHDRAWS from match against world No 1 Novak Djokovic at the Madrid Open just an hour before play due to food poisoning – in what would have been Brit’s highest-profile match in years

  • Andy Murray was set to take on Novak Djokovic for the first time in five years
  • The Brit had progressed to the last-16 of the Madrid Open on the clay this week
  • But en route to the stadium, the 34-year-old has pulled out due to illness
  • Murray accepted a wild card having reversed his decision, made due to concerns as to how his body would react on clay, to skip the clay court swing

Andy Murray was forced into a last minute withdrawal from his match against Novak Djokovic due to a bout of food poisoning.

The 34 year-old Scot had been due to face the world number one for the first time in more than five years this morning in the third round of the Madrid Open.

However, with Djokovic having already completed his warm-up he was given a walkover into the quarter finals.

Andy Murray has withdrawn from his match against Novak Djokovic in Madrid due to illness

Murray's withdrawal hands the Serb a free passage to the quarter-finals of the Madrid Open

Murray’s withdrawal hands the Serb a free passage to the quarter-finals of the Madrid Open

Tournament Director Feliciano Lopez told Sportsmail: ‘I had a message yesterday from Andy that he was not feeling well. He had food poisoning, it sounds like he is feeling better this morning but is still not well enough to go on the court ‘.

Murray is said to have been unable to leave his hotel room on Wednesday after finishing his victory over Denis Shapovalov at 12.34am.

Now he must decide whether or not to pursue his original plan of playing in this weekend’s qualifying event for the Italian Open in Rome.

At present he does not plan to play the French Open although must have been encouraged by his performances in the Spanish capital.

Murray accepted a wild card into the event having reversed his original decision - made due to concerns as to how his body would react on the red stuff - to skip the clay court swing

Murray accepted a wild card into the event having reversed his original decision – made due to concerns as to how his body would react on the red stuff – to skip the clay court swing

He beat Grand Slam winner Dominic Thiem in the first round before upsetting world No 18 Denis Shapovalov in three sets to set up a meeting with Djokovic.

Dan Evans versus world number eight Andrey Rublev was moved onto the main court in place of Murray and Djokovic.

The two-time Wimbledon champion’s withdrawal hands the Serb a free passage to the quarter-finals where he will face either Hubert Hurkacz or Dusan Lajovic.

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