Andy Murray; NTC & Svitolina 🎾 Free hit? πŸ€” Washington ✈️ Toronto πŸ›¬ Cincinnati πŸ€·πŸΌβ€β™‚οΈ New York πŸ—½

Following his withdrawal from Wimbledon all eyes are on New York which is about 6 weeks away so what to expect from now until then from Andy Murray?

NTC & Svitolina

Andy was spotted at the national tennis centre in London this week and also playing there was Elina Svitolina who does reside a lot in London and the two practiced together.

Free hit?

Second half of the season is a free hit, there are no points to defend and it should be used as a chance to build up match momentum and any other positives will be a bonus but the real push should come in January.

Washington

Andy did sign up to the ATP 500 event in Washington a while back and is still down to play there in the lead up to New York. It isn’t known when Andy will head out to America however I fully expect him not to take part in Davis Cup.

Toronto

Following Washington the plan will be to head west to Toronto for the Rogers Cup where the hard courts are testing and will be the first big test ahead of US Open.

Cincinnati

There is nothing confirmed and he isn’t on entry lists for Cincinnati which is odd. It means he won’t use protected ranking but can still be offered a wildcard.

I do think it will be a last minute decision on Cincinnati depending on how he does in Toronto and doesn’t want to burn himself out.

New York

A return to Flushing Meadows to compete is the target. Andy will be on site a week before but if he doesn’t do Cincinnati I expect he will arrive early.

It’s great to see Andy back but I don’t expect him to pull up trees in New York as he hasn’t played best of five since Wimbledon last year and these conditions can be tough in New York.

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Andy Murray withdraws from Wimbledon!

Andy Murray has made a tough but wise decision to withdraw from Wimbledon.

The Brit who returned at Queens a couple of weeks ago and came close to a win against Kyrgios then went onto Eastbourne where he defeated Wawrinka in straight sets before losing to fellow Brit Kyle Edmund in straight sets the following round.

Andy has looked sharp during the comeback and fitness will come with game time but the best of five sets has come too soon in the recovery process for the Brit who will now rest ahead of the American hard court season with his eyes on Flushing Meadows

Welcome back Andy! Kyrgios edges 2hr 40min battle against the Brit!

Welcome back Andy Murray!

His comeback has never been about getting the win but his performance on his first match in almost a year after surgery was very good.

I said in the preview I’m not going to talk about their games and I’m still not going to go into too much detail however what we saw was very positive.

Andy served well and hit his ground strokes well to. With time he will improve his movement around the court which will allow him to get more power from behind the baseline and use those running shots to defend.

Kyrgios himself did seem to be struggling and looked frustrated as he pick up his first win at Queens in his fourth appearance and his first win against Murray on his fifth attempt. Focus will be now on an injury with him crouching a lot and whether he will play doubles with Lleyton Hewitt who is here this week.

The performance was good but it doesn’t matter. These next few weeks and months will be important in getting back to that level which is where I imagine Andy will want to be by January, if anything this second half of the season is a free hit!

He looked motivated and he looked fit and with a smile he will be back!

Welcome back!

The 342 day wait is almost over

The wait fans all over the world have been waiting for.

On Tuesday afternoon for the first time in 342 days Andy Murray will be back playing at a tennis tournament since Wimbledon last year. He was due to play in Netherlands last week but wasn’t ready and made a decision 29 minutes before the draw was to be made to play at Queens.

Unfortunately for Andy the draw gods have not been kind for him as he will play good friend of his Nick Kyrgios in round one; a player he has never beaten.

The result doesn’t matter and if I see one person in the media criticise his performance or ‘chances’ at Wimbledon they need to go and have a long look in the mirror. Don’t expect him to pull up tree’s.

Andy had surgery back in Melbourne in January which was a surprise to everyone as we only knew about it after it was done.

Recovering from surgery is tough but Andy did it a few years ago when he had back surgery and was written off after that, he then went on to play some of his best ever tennis.

Getting back to his level will be a long and difficult road. The tour has moved on but Andy is a hard worker, he said he felt no pain after surgery and when he could begin rehab he would do around 6-8 hours a day.

Seeing how the hip reacts to tour life is something time will tell and maybe it will mean a revised schedule like Roger skips clay, Rafa slows down around grass and is something I expect Stan and Novak to do now to.

I don’t really see the point in sitting here and previewing this match at all.

I think it will be emotional for Andy, his family and us his fans. He said he will be nervous and has missed tennis a lot so I think it should be treated as a celebration.

Welcome back Andy!

A new chapter awaits!

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Dissecting the Draw’s – Queens Club & Birmingham

Well, the draw gods have treated us to some stunning round one match ups at the ATP 500 event in Queens Club and the WTA Premier event in Birmingham where I will be next week. So let’s have a look?

Queens Club

Marin Cilic v Fernando Verdasco

Top seed Marin Cilic takes on an unpredictable Fernando Verdasco. Fernando’s game is very much at it’s best when he is able to sit on the baseline with time. He adapts well to all surfaces and recently secured his 500th career win on the tour. Fernando will provide a challenge and I think he could cause an upset here. Marin has been in good form this year with his Roland Garros ending at the quarter finals against Juan Martin Del Potro.

Stan Wawrinka v Cameron Norrie

I suppose the questions will follow for Stan. Stan is set to play here at Queens and then Wimbledon before making the switch to hard court. Stan has just pulled out of some clay events due to take part in July due to quick surface change and if things don’t go to plan here surely Wimbledon becomes a question mark?Β 

Cam Norrie was good on the clay so it will be good to see him play at this big tournament against Stan who has no match rhythm this year something he is hoping to find as he teams up with Novak Djokovic in the doubles.

David Goffin v Feliciano Lopez

David Goffin never seems to get the luck, The Belgian’s year which has been good has been halted a few times by injury failing to pick up momentum where we expected him to be a major part of the clay court season and a first round match up against Feliciano Lopez who is of course the defending champion after a stunning run to win here last year having come here throughout his career.

Nick Kyrgios v Andy Murray

Stay tuned πŸ˜‰

Other matches

Jack Sock is in action against a tricky Daniil Medvedev who always provides a tricky test on grass. Milos Raonic is back in action after making the final in Stuttgart against Bhambri and could play Goffin/Lopez in R2.

Novak Djokovic is also at Queens Club and will open up against John Millman in R1 and round two match with second seed Grigor Dimitrov is possible!

Birmingham

Elina Svitolina v Donna Vekic

Well, I am hoping that this one doesn’t take to court until Wednesday but that’s unlikely! I’m so pleased Elina is here in Birmingham and I do hope to see her this week, likewise for Donna Vekic who is another player who becomes so dangerous on the grass courts.

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Petra Kvitova v Johanna Konta

After an explosive end for Johanna Konta in her final loss against Ashleigh Barty in Nottingham and it won’t get any easier against the defending champion Petra Kvitova who has been quite sensational this year. Despite being in front of a home crowd I do expect a 50/50 atmosphere as Petra’s story and win here last year really connected with the crowd.

Daria Gavrilova v Dominika Cibulkova

Two players I love watching. On their day they are unstoppable but unfortunately for Dominika more her day hasn’t come too often. It’s easy to forget she is a former Grand Slam finalist and under two years ago was stunning at the WTA Finals in Singapore, I would love to see her reach those heights again.

Daria is good to watch. She’s lively from the baseline and when it all comes together she does perform well however when she doesn’t perform the wheels come off, frustration is visible and it becomes a bit of a circus.

Other matches

Garbine Muguruza is the top seed and will open her week up against Pavlyuchenkova. British pair Heather Watson and Katie Boulter are also here and will open up against Tsurenko and Osaka respectively.

Pliskova, Mladenovic, Kasatkina and Nottingham champion Barty are also in action in Birmingham.

 

“Hoping” – Andy Murray gives update as grass court season edges closer

Update – Since this post below was written on Tuesday morning during the afternoon it was announced that Andy Murray had withdrawn from Libema Open in Holland. The Brit wants to be 100% ready before returning with eyes set on Queens and of course Wimbledon.

Andy Murray is due to take to part at the Libema Open in Holland which begins next Monday. The tournament is an ATP 250 event on grass a place Murray has never played before but a few months ago did sign up.

Just because a player has signed up to a tournament it doesn’t mean that they will play it. Following a statement from Andy Murray in an interview with Jaguar I will be surprised if he takes part next week.

“It’s been very slow. I’ve been out getting close to a year now which is a lot longer than I think me or any of my team expected at the beginning. But I’m getting closer to playing again, I’ve started training a few days ago and hoping to make my comeback during the grass court season”

When asked about Wimbledon the Brit replied with “I’m hoping I will be there”

Two words in both sentence, “hoping”. There is no definite answer and all avenues will be explored we’d imagine. By the sounds of it he has stepped up his training on the grass over this last week.

Not too long ago he was practicing on the hard courts at the Mouratoglou Academy in Nice, France.

The scheduled tournament run for Murray is Rosmalen, Queens and Wimbledon however it is expected we will find out more over the next 24 hours.

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Why the latest Andy Murray story is just noise!

Over the last 24 hours a story emerged that Andy Murray’s comeback will be delayed and isn’t going well but if you read the story it’s all based on noise with no fact.

The story uses phrases such as ‘sources close to Murray’ and ‘not thought to have done much (training)’ and well where is the fact here?

The phrase ‘sources close’ is quite comical as no one knew Andy Murray was having hip surgery in Melbourne until after it was done and no one knew until after he practiced at the Mouratoglou Academy until a fan posted videos on social media so maybe these ‘sources’ and I use that term very loosely need to pick it up!

I have doubts that Murray would have gone to the Mouratoglou Academy as well unless he was feeling in a good place and consulting his team.

The plan has always been for Andy to go to Rasmalen at the beginning of June and that is still the plan the tournament has confirmed with then Queens and Wimbledon the plan but it is a wait and see job!

There does seem to be some media obsession over the last few weeks with Andy playing challenger events with new tournaments in Glasglow which he didn’t play but had no intention of playing and same with Loughborough which is on the horizon. Murray’s non-appearance in these tournaments seems to have helped fuel these ‘set back’ stories which like I said are noise.

A decision on what happens over the grass court season will come closer to events and not now, he has a schedule in place but it won’t be set in stone unless he is ready to compete.

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