World number three Roger Federer says his back has improved as he returns to action in Stuttgart, three weeks before the start of Wimbledon.
The Swiss, 34, withdrew from the French Open, ending a run of 65 consecutive appearances at Grand Slam tournaments.
But the seven-time Wimbledon champion says he benefitted from rest before his return to Stuttgart’s grass courts.
“I feel much better again. It’s been a good last three weeks. No setbacks,” Federer told the ATP website.
“I feel much stronger. I was pretty fragile three weeks ago.”
The 17-time Grand Slam champion has been riddled with injuries this year, including an operation on a minor knee problem suffered when running a bath for his twin daughters.
“It’s been a tough year,” Federer, who has been beaten by newly crowned French Open champion Novak Djokovic in the last two Wimbledon finals, said. “But I’m super excited about playing another tournament.
“It was much better for me to look forward to the rest of the season, rest of my life, really.
“I didn’t want to have setback after setback and injure myself maybe further. In hindsight, that was definitely the right decision.”