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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Tuesday April 18, 2023

One of the most injury-riddled players in the men’s game is in danger of missing a big chunk of the clay court season. Ubi Tennis reports that Matteo Berrettini is dealing with a grade 2 strain to his abdominal, and he may miss Madrid and Rome if his recovery doesn’t surpass expectations.

Tennis Express

Berrettini has been injured off and on since returning to the tour from hand surgery last summer. The Italian suffered his most recent setback at Monte-Carlo, where he pulled out of his round of 16 tussle with eventual finalist Holger Rune.

“Of course his mood isn't the best right now. You know that he is a very introspective guy, who gets to the bottom of things,” his coach Vincenzo Santopadre told the Gazzetta. “Last year, after the operation, he came back and won two tournaments. Then it was a continuous stop and go. Sooner or later he had to pay the price."

Berretini was looking at a brilliant chance to rebuild his ranking this spring, after having missed all of the clay court season in 2022 due to the aforementioned hand injury. But it doesn’t look like it will be the case.

“At the moment it is more no than yes,” his coach said of Berrettini’s chances of playing in Rome, which is the Masters 1000 event that takes place after Madrid (May 10-21). “There is no point in deluding yourself – If then things go faster than expected we will be delighted to be able to play. Matteo hoped to be able to be in Munich and Madrid, where he has already played in a final.”

Berrettini will take a wait and see approach once again. If there is a positive it is the fact that the Italian has dealt with the same injury before.

“Let's see what the doctor will say,” his coach said, “but to start doing physiotherapy you need to understand how the lesion is healing. It's a type of injury that he's had before, so on the one hand he's calmer because he knows what to expect."