Andy Murray announced Friday that he would not be playing in the upcoming Australian Open after being unable to negotiate a “workable quarantine” with Tennis Australia following his positive COVID-19 test.
The former world No. 1 and three-time major champion had been unable to fly to Melbourne last week after being diagnosed with the virus, but he had hoped to make the trip at a later date and play in the year’s first major.
“Gutted to share that I won’t be flying out to Australia to compete at the Australian Open,” he said on Friday. “We’ve been in constant dialogue with Tennis Australia to try and find a solution which would allow some form of workable quarantine, but we couldn’t make it work.”
Murray, a five-time finalist at the tournament and a fan favorite, had been granted a wild card by the event and was looking to make his first appearance in Melbourne since 2019. According to British media reports, Murray was asymptomatic and otherwise in good health.
“I’m devastated not to be playing out in Australia,” he added. “It’s a country and tournament that I love.”
Currently 72 players are in a “hard quarantine” in Melbourne and must self-isolate in their hotel rooms for 14 days following positive tests on three charter flights. Those unaffected are allowed to go to the tournament grounds for five hours every day to train but otherwise must remain in their rooms for the same two-week duration.
The Australian Open is scheduled to begin on Feb. 8, three weeks delayed from its normal start date.