| RIOS: Taking a month off
Santiago: Former world No. 1 Marcelo Rios, frustrated at a recent spate of injuries, said on Thursday he was going to take a month off and would consider retiring from the sport.
Rios, who in 1999 became the first South American to hold the No. 1 ranking, said he would not take part in any more tournaments until Duesseldorf in May and would instead spend the month in Costa Rica pondering his future.
“It’s a personal decision,” he told a Chilean radio station.
“I want to feel good and come back when I have the desire to play. If I don’t have the will to play at Roland Garros (the French Open which follows Duesseldorf), I won’t come back.”
Rios, who has won 18 singles titles and finished 24th in the Champions Race last year, was plagued by tendinitis in his right knee last year, forcing him to miss three months of action. He also lost his record of having won at least one ATP title every year since 1995. This year also got off to a frustrating start for the 27-year-old.
He was beaten in the final of the Vina del Mar open in his native Chile, a tournament he has never won, and pulled out of the Buenos Aires Open the following week with a shoulder problem.
He was then beaten in the quarter finals of the Acapulco Open in Mexico where he complained bitterly about playing the match on an outside court.
“It’s going to be a very big decision,” he said. “If I’m going to carry on, I want to do it well, otherwise I believe it’s the time to start thinking about something else.
“Tennis is my profession but I don’t have the same desire that I used to have to travel and keep on training. I don’t want to make the wrong decision, so I’m going to take my time.”