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January 18, 2022

Casper Ruud

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Press Conference

THE MODERATOR: Unfortunately we're here with Casper, who has to pull out of the Australian Open with an injury.

Casper, can you take us through what happened.

CASPER RUUD: Yes. Unfortunately, like Nicola said, I had to pull out of this year's Australian Open due to an ankle injury. Two days ago in practice I rolled or twisted my ankle. I hoped that I would be able to recover and be able to step on court today with the two days that I had, but rolling an ankle usually maybe needs some more time.

I tried everything I could to be ready, but unfortunately I've decided that I'm not a hundred percent ready and I will not be able to play a hundred percent like I have to to compete at this level. That's the final decision.

THE MODERATOR: What are the plans now?

CASPER RUUD: Yes, the plan is obviously to rest. Like I said, I tried to play a little bit yesterday and today to see how it feels. Unfortunately there were no improvements today, so I will need to do probably the rest of the week off and at some point head back to Norway, hopefully get ready for the South American swing.

I always try to look ahead. Even though it's a tough decision, tough day today, I'm sure I will find motivation to work hard, get strong and fit again, be ready for some tournaments down in the Golden Swing, as it's called.

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How big of a disappointment is it for you given how well you felt coming into the season? What was your ambition for this tournament?

CASPER RUUD: Yeah, no, it feels tough obviously. Disappointing. I had a great time here last year, reaching the fourth round, the best result I had in a Grand Slam. Was hoping I could try to do the same this year obviously, maybe a step further.

This year the Grand Slams will be a big goal for me because last year, except for this one, I felt like I didn't do as well as I had hoped in a Grand Slam.

Still there are three chances hopefully left. It's tough way to kind of start the year because couple times before here in Australia I've been forced to struggle with some injuries and retire. Last year also in the fourth round I was forced to retire after two sets.

I have good memories and some tough ones from down here. I mean, it's a long year. At the end of the day I have to listen to my body. That's what I need to be able to perform. It's not there at the moment. Like I said, to be able to compete with these guys at this level you need to be a hundred percent.

My game relies a lot on having good footwork. When you're ankle is not responding, cannot take your explosive movements, take the stopping/starting movements, then it's tough to perform well.

Q. Do you have an idea of how long it will take to recover?

CASPER RUUD: It's not the worst twist. I had one before which I think was a bit worse. That's a positive thing. I've done scans, ultrasound, already. It looks positive in a way because it's not the most serious. It doesn't seem to unstable at this moment the ankle, all these things. Don't need to go in full details.

It's a tendon that needs a little bit of rest. It's better that it's a tendon than the ligaments, that I can tell you. I will do the rest of the week resting, just trying to heal, ice it, do all the things necessary. Like I said, I'm sure I will be back on court sooner or later and that I will be able to step on court hopefully in Buenos Aires in a couple weeks.

I have some travel to do back home, then hopefully down to South America. I'm sure I will be ready for it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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