Two-time champion Andy Murray will play Frenchman Benoit Paire in the first round at Wimbledon next week if he decides he is fit enough to compete.
However, the 31-year-old’s return to the grass isn’t going to come without stipulations. In an interview with BBC, Murray emphasized that he isn’t going to play in Wimbledon if he isn’t playing competitively.
When the reporter asked him if his decision “hinges” on being competitive, the former ATP World No. 1 didn’t mince words.
“Pretty much, yeah,” he said. “You know … it’s not like I’m going to do any damage to myself if I do play at Wimbledon … You obviously gain stuff physically by playing matches and obviously ultimately that’s the best test for you is to play competitive matches … How do you go about improving [what needs to be improved]? Does that come from being on the match court, being on the practice court or doing more work in the gym?”
Murray also told BBC that “there is no danger of me injuring my hip more than any other stage.” He also mentioned playing with Kyle Edmund, Britain’s top-ranked player at No. 18 in the world, adding that he didn’t win a game against Edmund when they practiced.
Ultimately, however, it boiled down to this for Murray: “I don’t want to go out there to just play, I want to compete properly. If I’m in the right place, physically feel ready, and mentally in the right place, then I’ll go for it.”
Wimbledon will feature, as always, the best in tennis, including defending champion Roger Federer. Federer skipped the clay court season to manage his body after winning the Australian Open. Murray hasn’t played a major since Wimbledon last summer, in which he made it to quarterfinals before losing to the United States’ Sam Querrey in five sets, which would be his last match of the season.
Since his return, he’s played in the Queen’s Club Championshps and the Eastbourne International. Murray lost to Nick Kyrgios in straight sets in the first round of the Queen’s Club Championships. He then defeated Stan Wawrinka as a wild card at the Eastbourne International before losing to Edmund.