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Wimbledon: Last year's runners-up Matteo Berrettini withdraws after testing positive for covid-19
- Matteo Berrettini lost to Novak Djokovic last year in the Wimbledon final
- Berrettini has not lost a game on grass in the last 9 games
- He recently returned from a three-month injury lay-off
Wimbledon's runners-up from last year, Matteo Berrettini has withdrawn from this year's tournament after testing positive for covid-19.
Berrettini, who recently defended his Queen's title ahead of Wimbledon, was beaten by Novak Djokovic in the final last year at All England Club.
"I am heartbroken to announce that I need to withdraw from @wimbledon due to a positive COVID-19 test result. I have had flu symptoms and been isolating the last few days. I have no words to describe the extreme disappointment I feel. The dream is over for this year, but I will be back stronger. Thank you for the support," wrote Berrettini in an Instagram post.
The 26-year-old Italian player has been replaced in the draw by lucky loser Elias Ymer of Sweden.
Berrettini, who was due to play Chile's Cristian Garin in his opening match on Tuesday, has now joined Croatia's Marin Cilic in the list of players to have pulled out of the ongoing season of Wimbledon because of Covid-19.
The Italian star recently returned from a long three-month layoff after undergoing surgery on his right hand. He returned to the tour at Stuttgart where he won the ATP title by beating Andy Murray in the final before clinching the title at the grass-court event Queens's. Berrettini is on a streak of nine-game wins on the grass.
After Wimbledon took place last year with some covid-related restrictions, the tournament is back at full capacity this year and players do not have to test routinely.
In addition, covid cases are on the rise in the UK, according to the latest news reports. Therefore, Berrettini decided to take a covid test on Tuesday despite not having severe symptoms.
"Despite symptoms not being severe, I decided it was important to take another test this morning to protect the health and safety of my fellow competitors and everyone else involved in the tournament," he added.
Defending champion Djokovic won his opening round on Monday but he was made to work for a four-set victory by South Korea's Soonwoo Kwon. Meanwhile, 22-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal is currently in action as he is playing against Argentina's Francisco Cerundolo in his first round.