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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Thursday April 15, 2021

Dominic Thiem took some time off after Dubai and was hoping to make a return to the tour—and in full fitness—at next week’s Serbia Open in Belgrade, but the Austrian has suffered a setback in training and will now skip the event.

Tennis Express

“2021 just doesn’t want to get going,” he wrote on his website. “Unfortunately I will have to cancel my start at next week’s tournament in Novak Djokovic’s hometown Belgrade. My knee hurts and I went to see a doctor. It is not a big issue but I need to take care of it. I am definitely not fit enough to play next week. I am terribly sorry because I was really looking forward to this tournament. I hope I will be able to play in Belgrade in 2022.”

The 27-year-old, who was dealing with some foot issues earlier in the season, currently owns a 5-4 record and zero titles in 2021. He has lost three of his last four beginning with his round of 16 defeat at the hands of Grigor Dimitrov at the Australian Open. Thiem, whose long-stated goal is to win Roland-Garros, says he will delay his return until May, when the Madrid Open begins.

“This will delay my return to the ATP-tour to Madrid,” he said. “No later than that do I want to be completely fit at the beginning of May and play proper tennis. There is something positive, though: Coach Nicolas Massu arrived in Austria yesterday, we are going to continue my program even though at the moment we have to be careful. In the meantime I have also been working on my physical fitness with sports scientist Mike Reinprecht. There is no doubt, the big goal till the summer are the French Open – in Paris I must be at my best.”