March 25, 2018 / 12:58 AM / in 7 months

Federer to skip European clay court season again

(Reuters) - Roger Federer will skip the upcoming European clay court season, including the French Open, he said on Saturday after his shock loss to 175th-ranked Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis at the Miami Open.

Mar 24, 2018; Key Biscayne, FL, USA; Roger Federer of Switzerland waves to the crowd while leaving the court after his match against Thanasi Kokkinakis of Australia (not pictured) on day five of the Miami Open at Tennis Center at Crandon Park. Kokkinakis won 3-6, 6-3, 7-6(4). Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

“I decided not to play,” Federer said of his plans for Europe.

The decision means the 36-year-old will follow the same path as last year, when he also took two months off after the Miami Open, before returning to win Wimbledon.

Federer’s loss to Kokkinakis was his second in six days, after falling to Juan Martin del Potro at Indian Wells.

Kokkinakis is the lowest-ranked player to defeat a men's world number one since 178th-ranked Francisco Clavet beat Lleyton Hewitt in Miami 2003, the ATP Tour here said on its website.

Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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