Roger Federer has become the second high-profile player to pull out of the Madrid Open, as he looks to be at his wife's side as they expect their third child.
Federer follows world no.2 Novak Djokovic out of the Masters 1000 event, the Serbian star's trip was cut short by a recurrence of a troublesome arm injury.
The record Grand Slam winner already has twin girls and now his wife, Mirka Federer, is nearing the birth of a third child.
With the due date unknown, it could be quite some time that the 32-year-old misses, he had previously said that his growing family takes priority over any tennis tournaments.
There are now doubts that the record Grand Slam winner will feature at the French Open, which begins later this month, after he revealed on Facebook to his 14 million fans that he is set for a break.
"I’ve decided to withdraw from Madrid to be with my wife Mirka during these next few exciting weeks for our family," he said on his official page.
"I apologize to my fans and hope to be back in Madrid next year. I’ll be training near my home, and am excited to rejoin the Tour soon!"
Madrid was set to be Federer's first action since defeat in the final of the Monte Carlo Masters a few weeks ago against compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka.
Previously the world no.4 was expected to be one of the favourites to land the Madrid crown for a fourth time.
Frenchman Giles Simon was supposed to be his first opponent in round-two after the top seeds received byes passed the first stage.
The Swiss star's impending fatherhood will serve a massive ace to the likes of world no.1 Rafael Nadal and the returning Andy Murray as Roland Garros looms larger on the horizon.
At 32, Federer's hopes of winning a second title in Paris are running out. The 17-time major winner had to take advantage of Nadal's only ever loss on the French dirt in 2009 to complete his career slam.
Nadal has been in wretched form recently on his favoured clay surface, with defeats to compatriots David Ferrer and Nicolas Almagro in successive quarter-finals, therefore the absence of two of tennis' traditional 'big four' will make things easier for the 27-year-old to win a fourth title in his homeland.
Meanwhile, Murray returns to the court for the first time since a Davis Cup defeat against Italy ended Great Britain's hopes of reaching the semi-finals.
The British no.1 is without a coach and clay is his worst surface, however he did win this tournament back in 2008.
The top seeds are due to kick their campaigns off tomorrow in Spain's capital.
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