A devastated Alex de Minaur withdrew from the Australian Open on Thursday with an abdominal tear, describing it as “really serious”.

The world No 21 and Australia’s top player pulled out of the Adelaide International with the same problem and has not been able to recover for his home Grand Slam. “It’s not great. Not going to lie. Obviously it’s a week of the calendar that I really look forward to and put in all the hard work for, so it’s pretty devastating to miss out on my home Slam,” he said.

“I wanted to go out there and play, even though I’ve got a four-centimetre grade two tear. So it’s not a joke – it’s something really serious. Getting out of bed hurts, everyday activity it hurts,” he added.

De Minaur helped Australia to the semi-finals at the ATP Cup earlier this month, winning two of his four singles matches and pushing world number one Rafael Nadal hard in an engrossing three-setter.

Nicknamed ‘Demon’, the 20-year-old had a breakout year in 2019, winning titles at Zhuhai, Atlanta and Sydney, to move ahead of Nick Kyrgios as Australia’s top player.