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Shoulder troubles pull Monfils out of Sydney International

World number 12 Gael Monfils has pulled out of the Sydney International because of an inflamed right shoulder. The Frenchman said he needed rest "to be 100 percent for the Australian Open" next week.

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AFP - French top seed Gael Monfils withdrew from the Sydney International on Monday, citing a shoulder problem.

The world number 12 said he had an inflamed right shoulder and needed some time off to give him a chance of playing in next week's Australian Open in Melbourne.

Monfils, 23, reached the semi-finals of last week's Brisbane International and said he was taking the precaution of pulling out of the Sydney tournament to prevent the onset of shoulder tendinitis.

"I have had an inflammation since last week in Brisbane and it has been getting worse," Monfils told reporters.

"I had a little hope it would be a bit better, but I think it's going to turn into something chronic if I keep going playing with it.

"So I need to take some days off and to be 100 percent for the Australian Open."

Monfils said he has had the shoulder inflammation for over a week and had experienced a similar injury two years ago.

"I've had this now for 10 days because maybe I overworked it. Then with the first (Brisbane) tournament of the year, I played a long match, so maybe that's why I feel like that."

He said he intended to return to practice later this week to test the serving shoulder before the year's opening grand slam tournament, starting next Monday.

"I will have treatment with my physio, and then maybe I will have an X-ray to see exactly what is the problem," he said.

"I will try to stay positive for the Australian Open."

Czech Tomas Berdych, the second seed, is now the designated highest men's seed of the Sydney International, which started on Sunday.

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