Federer withdraws from OZ Open to allow knee recovery
NEW DELHI [Maha Media]: Six-times champion and Swiss tennis maestro Roger Federer has withdrawn from the Australian Open 2021.
The World No. 5 last featured in January this year in the Australian Open before undergoing knee surgery.
"In the end, Roger ran out of time to get himself ready for the rigours of a Grand Slam and he's very disappointed he won't be coming to Melbourne in 2021," said Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley in an official statement.
"The Australian Open has always held a special place in his heart -- remember it was Roger who first called the AO the 'happy slam'," he added.
The mega-event will take place at Melbourne Park from February 8-21 and will feature singles, doubles, and wheelchair competitions.
Defending champ Novak Djokovic and women's singles legend Serena Williams were among the entries named for the Australian Open on December 24.
Also in contention on the women's side are world No.2 Simona Halep (ROU), 2020 US Open champion  Naomi Osaka (JPN), defending champion  Sofia Kenin (USA),  Elina Svitolina (UKR),  Karolina Pliskova (CZE),  Bianca Andreescu (CAN),  Petra Kvitova (CZE),  Kiki Bertens (NED) and  Aryna Sabalenka (BLR).
While in men's event, Djokovic along with world No.2 Rafael Nadal (ESP),  Dominic Thiem (AUT),  Daniil Medvedev (RUS),  Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE),  Alexander Zverev (GER),  Andrey Rublev (RUS),  Diego Schwartzman (ARG) and  Matteo Berrettini (ITA), make up an entertaining top-10 mix of Grand Slam champions
A total of 104 players receive direct entry into the men's and women's singles main draw and a further eight are awarded wildcards, while 16 places will be determined at the qualifying rounds from January 10-13 in Dubai and Doha respectively.