France's hopes of winning the Davis Cup tennis series have been dealt a hefty blow with top player Jo-Wilfried Tsonga ruled out for the rest of the season with a knee injury.
The world number 13 already had three months on the sidelines this summer to have an operation on his troublesome left knee and only returned to action last month in Tokyo.
But he felt pain again in the joint in losing to compatriot Gael Monfils in the semi-finals of the ATP Montpellier tournament last week.
His absence will certainly be felt by France when they travel to Belgrade early next month to contest the Davis Cup final against Novak Djokovic's Serbia who will be bidding to win the trophy for the first time.
Monfils will likely be France's lead singles player with the other spot going to either Michael Lodra, Richard Gasquet or Gilles Simon.