Queen’s | Murray is Back!
Andy Murray is back. He arrived on Centre Court at Queen’s to a standing ovation from the packed stadium to play his first match in 11 months on a stage he has dominated for many years collecting five titles in the process.
His match with Nick Kyrgios was to prove a testing affair, not only for the hip which underwent surgery last January, but the rest of his body bearing in mind his lack of match play.
But while his first match back ended in 2-6 7-6(4) 7-5 defeat, there were plenty of positives for the 31-year-old Scot who only decided to compete at the Fever Tree Championships last Saturday morning.
I won’t rule anything out just now. I won’t rule out playing Eastbourne and not playing Wimbledon. I wouldn’t rule out not playing a tournament next week and trying to get matches like in an exhibition tournament, as well, to get ready for Wimbledon. Andy Murray
He lacked match sharpness but his timing and, more importantly, his movement generally looked confident. Despite a slight slide which made hearts leap, the former world No.1’s footing looked assured as he fought for a win, but in the end, it became evident that that vital match fitness was missing. He started to look fatigued and even started to feel his back.
He saved match points at 4-5 in the decider but eventually succumbed after an intriguing two-hour 39-minutes of play, with a weak double fault.
“It was nice to finally get a win over him but I can’t really count it,” Kyrgios said after his first win over the Briton in six meetings.
As far as Murray was concerned, he had come through, but he wasn’t entirely satisfied as he admitted to feeling tired after the lengthy match and revealed that he had pain in his glute and lower back. He would be discussing the situation with his team and was considering competing at Eastbourne and even skipping Wimbledon.
“It’s something I need to speak to my team about. How I feel like tomorrow is relevant, as well, because if I wake up and I really don’t feel good tomorrow, then that’s obviously not a great sign for, you know, best-of-five-set tennis at this stage.
“However, if I pull up and feel okay, then that’s a good sign. I mean, at the end of the match, I was certainly tired, but it wasn’t like I was completely off my feet and didn’t feel like I couldn’t move anymore.
“But, you know, potentially if it was a five-setter, that could have been another hour and a half of tennis and that probably would have been difficult for me.
“So that’s something I’ll need to kind of assess over the next day or so, couple of days, and speak to my team a bit about, see where I go from here.
“I won’t rule anything out just now. I won’t rule out playing Eastbourne and not playing Wimbledon. I wouldn’t rule out not playing a tournament next week and trying to get matches like in an exhibition tournament, as well, to get ready for Wimbledon.
“I’m not sure yet. I’m really happy that I got on the match court today and played. You know, it was a close decision. I have not been practising loads at all. I’m happy I got out there and competed and performed respectably.
“I’ll kind of need to wait and see what happens the next few days and chat with my team about that, because I don’t know exactly what’s best for me just now.”
Nerves also played a part.
“I was pretty nervous this morning beforehand, just because you don’t really know how you’re going to perform,” he added. “And obviously playing against someone like Nick, as well, a tough match, he’s obviously a very good grass court player and serves extremely well. So I didn’t know how well anything was going to go, really. I was nervous about that.”
The important thing he is back and he looked good on the court.