Andy Murray makes surprise announcement ahead of the Australian Open

Posted January 11, 2019

Andy Murray will make his return to the Australian Open with a tough first-round match against Roberto Bautista Agut. "I'm not sure I can play through the pain for another four or five months". The British champ announced that he plans to retire this year, saying he'd like to play through Wimbledon in July but may not be able to make it that far.

"I've had a great off-season and I feel very well prepared".

"The hip is incredibly difficult to come back from for especially a tennis player and someone that has worked as hard as he's worked, put the miles on", ESPN tennis pundit Patrick McEnroe said. "I've been in a lot of pain for about 20 months now", Murray said at Melbourne Park ahead of the Australian Open. I'm also not certain I'm able to do that.

Murray, 31, has battled lingering hip issues for almost two years and has been unable to return to full strength.

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"I've pretty much done everything that I could to try and get my hip feeling better and it hasn't helped loads. But I don't see him playing if he at least doesn't think he can be a factor in a major".

Fighting off tears, the 31-year-old conceded there was a real chance he would not play beyond the Australian Open. It's not something I want, I don't want to continue playing that way. "There are little things, day to day, that are also a struggle". The former world No 1 added that even "putting shoes and socks on" is causing him pain at present. But being so close, I'll give it a go.

Murray said that he saw his surgeon on Wednesday.

Djokovic has won all of those and they could meet again right from the opening round next week, with Andy now standing at the 230th place and using the protected ranking to enter the main draw after a hip injury that threatened to end his career at one point.

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But he felt the Australian Open might end up being his swansong, given the pain from his hip had become nearly unbearable.

"The walking, there are certain things on the court I can not really do properly now, but the pain is the driving factor".

"I can play with limitations, but having the limitations and the pain is not allowing me to enjoy competing or training".

Murray became the first singles player from the United Kingdom to be world No. 1 when he topped the rankings November 7, 2016.

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