Andy Murray remains to be hoping to make it to at least one extra Wimbledon event earlier than his problematic hip forces him into retirement. For now, he’s solely committing to the Australian Open.
In an emotional information convention Friday, when a tearful Murray needed to depart the room shortly after his first try to get it began, and wanted to pause a number of occasions to compose himself as soon as it had resumed, he confirmed he’d play his first-round match on the Australian Open subsequent week however wasn’t certain how for much longer he may proceed past that.
The 31-year-old Murray stated he practiced within the low season with the principle purpose of constructing one final run at Wimbledon, the place he ended the 77-year drought for British males together with his title in 2013, however now wasn’t certain he’d make it that far.
“I can nonetheless play to a degree — not a degree I’m joyful taking part in at,” he stated. “But in addition, it’s not simply that. The ache is an excessive amount of actually.”
“I don’t wish to proceed taking part in that means. I attempted just about all the pieces that I may to get it proper — that hasn’t labored.”
The three-time Grand Slam champion is scheduled to open towards No. 22-ranked Roberto Bautista Agut at Melbourne Park, the place the season-opening main begins Monday.
He has reached the ultimate 5 occasions on the Australian Open however by no means received the title. Getting by means of the primary spherical can be a significant achievement in 2019 for the previous No. 1-ranked Murray, who has slumped to No. 230 after taking part in simply 12 matches final yr following surgical procedure on his proper hip in January.
He opened this season final week on the Brisbane Worldwide, the place he received his opening match towards James Duckworth however misplaced within the second spherical to Daniil Medvedev, displaying seen indicators of limping between factors and struggling to maneuver freely round courtroom. He had an incomplete observe match towards long-time pal and top-ranked Novak Djokovic on Thursday at Melbourne Park, however solely received two video games.
Murray has had a celebrated profession, breaking lengthy Grand Slam droughts for British males when he received the U.S. Open in 2012 and at Wimbledon the next yr — when he was the primary British man since Fred Perry in 1936 to win the distinguished garden tennis title. He additionally turned the one participant to win consecutive singles gold medals on the Olympics when he received at London in 2012 and Rio in 2016.
Lengthy thought-about a part of the so-called Large 4 in males’s tennis with Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, Murray possible would be the youngest of them to retire after 20 months of attempting to cope with his painful hip.
At 37, Federer is in Australia trying to win the title for the third consecutive yr and for a seventh time general. At 31, top-ranked Djokovic is at Melbourne Park additionally attempting to win a seventh Australian title. The 32-year-old Nadal is ranked No. 2 and assured of extending his profession for a number of years.
Murray has been making ready for the 2019 season figuring out that his profession might be over inside months. In his coaching program final month, he informed his assist group that the ache was changing into an excessive amount of and that he wanted to set a date for retirement.
“I spoke to my staff and I informed them I can’t hold doing this, that I wanted to have an finish level as a result of (I used to be) kind of taking part in with no concept when the ache was going to cease,” he informed the information convention Friday. “I stated to my staff ‘I believe I can get by means of to Wimbledon’ … that’s the place I want to cease — cease taking part in.”
Murray added, changing into tearful once more, “However I’m additionally not sure I’m ready to try this.
“I’m undecided I’m capable of play by means of the ache for an additional 4 of 5 months.”
Gamers and coaches around the globe rallied round Murray . Juan Martin del Potro, who has struggled with accidents all through his profession, posted a message on Twitter expressing his assist: “Andy, simply watched your convention. Please don’t cease attempting. Preserve combating … You need to retire by yourself phrases.”
Commentator Darren Cahill praised his contribution to the game , as did fellow playerGrigor Dimitrov.
Murray stated he’s contemplating one other hip operation, extra to enhance his high quality of life than as a means of returning to the highest degree in tennis.
“I’ve the choice to have one other operation, which is a bit of bit extra extreme than what I’ve had earlier than — having my hip resurfaced,” he stated. “That’s one thing that I’m critically contemplating proper now. Some athletes have had that and have gone again to competing (however) the rationale for having an operation like that isn’t to return to skilled sports activities, you realize, it’s only for a greater high quality of life.”
Murray stated he’d spoken extensively to long-time doubles star Bob Bryan about recovering from an analogous operation, however couldn’t see himself recovering to be match sufficient for singles and he wasn’t contemplating transitioning to doubles.
“I’ve a severely broken proper hip,” he stated. “Clearly you see me operating round a tennis courtroom, strolling in between factors, and clearly I do know it doesn’t’ look good … look comfy.
“However there’s little issues, day-to-day, which can be additionally a wrestle. It might be good to have the ability to do them with none ache: placing sneakers on, socks on, thinks like that. That’s the principle motive for doing it.”