Originally Posted by Mainad
Officially, he gave the reason that he wants to be as fit as possible for the 2 back-to-back HC Masters where's he had such patchy results in the last 3 years. He's determined to be a bit more consistent in them than he has shown during that time. However, I too am a bit surprised he didn't defend his finalist points in Dubai. As you say, he's going to be a bit match-rusty going into IW. IMO the foot injury he picked up at the AO final was probably a bit more serious then he let on. Either that or there have been other fitness concerns. Either way, I think the real reason is that he has needed all this time off to get his physical fitness back to as near-peak condition as possible. No doubt, we'll soon see if it has worked.
If his foot injury is more serious than stated, kudos to him for not coming out and saying it. That's what champions do, no excuses.