Federer pulls out of World Tour final

Six-time winner was 'not match-fit' as top-seed Djokovic wins a third consecutive World Tour Finals title.

    Federer was a six-time champion here at the O2 Arena [AP]
    Federer was a six-time champion here at the O2 Arena [AP]

    A mouthwatering finale to the season ended before it even began when Roger Federer was forced to pull out prior to the ATP World Tour Final showdown with Novak Djokovic.

    The 33-year-old Swiss, who spent nearly three hours late on Saturday beating compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka in a gruelling semi-final, announced his decision on court as the O2 Arena filled up for the expected final.

    Federer, who was bidding for a seventh title at the year-ender, apologised but said he was not "match-fit" after developing a back problem.

    "I hope you understand I wanted to come out personally and excuse myself for not playing ... I can't compete without a back at this level," he told the crowd who still warmly applauded, despite their obvious disappointment.

    ATP president Chris Kermode, standing alongside Federer, then announced that Andy Murray, who failed to qualify for the semi-finals after being thrashed by Federer on Thursday, would play Djokovic in a one-set exhibition match instead.

    Federer hopes to play for Switzerland against France in the Davis Cup final which starts on Friday.


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    The Philippines’ Typhoon Haiyan was the strongest storm ever to make landfall. Five years on, we revisit this story.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    We Are Still Here: A Story from Native Alaska

    We Are Still Here: A Story from Native Alaska

    From Qatar to Alaska, a personal journey exploring what it means to belong when your culture is endangered.