Djokovic heading to Eastbourne for Wimbledon warmup

But the 30-year-old has decided to make the trip to Eastbourne for a tournament that takes place just a week before the third grand slam of the season.

This is the first time since 2010 that Djokovic will play a grass court event between the French Open and Wimbledon.

The women's draw has an even stronger field, one which includes world number one Angelique Kerber, Karolina Pliskova and hometown star Johanna Konta.

The Serb usually snubs an appearance at any of the ATP tournaments the week before Wimbledon, opting instead to play in The Boodles exhibition event in Buckinghamshire.

The Serbian is a three-time Wimbledon champion and will be joined by Frenchman Gael Monfils and American John Isner who are the No 2 and No 3 seeds respectively.

Djokovic has endured a turbulent year since becoming the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to hold all four grand slams simultaneously after victory at the French Open a little over 12 months ago. He was runner-up to Nadal there in 2008. "I have heard great things about the tournament and looking forward to fine tuning my grass court game ahead of Wimbledon".

The former world No1, now No4 after a challenging 12 months that began with his third-round exit at Wimbledon past year, has usually elected to play an exhibition event in the days before The Championships, most frequently The Boodles at Stoke Park just west of London.

"I am looking forward to fine-tuning my grass court game ahead of Wimbledon", said the 12-time Grand Slam victor.

Following the lead of Sir Andy Murray, Stan Wawrinka and Milos Raonic, who all crashed out on Tuesday, Frenchman Tsonga succumbed 6-4, 6-4 to Muller.

  • Zachary Reyes