I didn't need the money, claims Almagro after rapid retirement

Nicolas Almagro emphatically denied suggestions he only attempted to play his opening-round match at the Australian Open in order to receive a pay cheque, after completing just four games before retiring on Monday.

Almagro had been troubled by a calf problem ahead of his contest with Jeremy Chardy at Melbourne Park, which lasted just 23 minutes before the Spaniard pulled out through injury while trailing 4-0 in the first set.

After the truncated encounter, Almagro denied he had been motivated by the money on offer for first-round losers in the grand slam - citing his career earnings of more than $10million.

"I went to court because I think I can play," he was quoted as saying by AS.

"I was top 10 [in the world rankings]; I have more than $10 million. I'm not going to play for $50,000. It is not the reason.

"I was trying to play during the week. It was tough. I did an MRI and the result wasn't good.

"That's it. I couldn't play. I felt the problem again on court and I had to retire."

Chardy will face fifth seed Kei Nishikori in round two.

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