Three-time world champion Jorge Lorenzo has pulled out of the Malaysian MotoGP following the first practice sessions as he struggles to recover from a wrist injury, officials said Saturday.
The Ducati rider was hoping to compete at Sepang Sunday as he had missed the last three MotoGPs after sustaining the injury to his left wrist in a crash during practice in Thailand.
But the Spaniard struggled in Friday's practices, finishing bottom of the timesheets and more than three seconds adrift of the fastest rider, Spain's Alex Rins.
"After a difficult day on the bike, along with the team he's taken the decision to withdraw from the event," organisers said.
The 31-year-old "experienced too much pain in braking and changes of direction", they added.
He will be replaced by Italian rider Michele Pirro for the remainder of the weekend.
Lorenzo, who has slipped to ninth in the world championship standings, crashed during practice for the inaugural Thai MotoGP last month, and went flying off his bike, which broke into pieces.
The accident was blamed on a mechanical problem.
He underwent surgery on a damaged ligament in Barcelona following the accident.
As well as Malaysia, the rider has been forced to sit out the MotoGPs in Thailand, Japan and Australia.