Andy Murray withdraws from Australian Open due to COVID-19 protocols
Three-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray has withdrawn from the impending Australian Open. Murray tested positive for COVID-19 shortly before flying to Melbourne. The 33-year-old was later asymptomatic, and hoped to compete in the event. However, he was unable to agree upon a "workable quarantine". Murray, who had been quarantining in the UK, would have faced another 14-day quarantine upon arrival in Melbourne.
Murray was granted a wild-card in the main draw
Murray, in a statement, confirmed that he won't be competing in tournament. Although he had been granted a wild-card to play in the tournament's main draw, he tested positive for COVID-19 last week, before flying to Melbourne.
Murray gutted to miss the Australian Open
"Gutted to share that I won't be flying out to Australia to compete at Australian Open," Murray said in a statement. "We've been in constant dialogue with Tennis Australia to try and find a solution which would allow some form of workable quarantine, but we couldn't make it work. I want to thank everyone there for their efforts, I'm devastated not to be playing."
The official Twitter handle of Australian Open confirmed the development
Murray has been struggling with injuries of late
This would have been Murray's first appearance at the Australian Open since 2019 when he lost in the first round to Roberto Bautista Agut. After undergoing hip surgery, Murray won the European Open (Antwerp) in October 2019. However, he has struggled to maintain his fitness lately. Murray had a pelvic injury last year. He will be keen to put this all behind.
Murray yet to go big after 2016
World number 123, Murray, has not gone past the second round of a Grand Slam since 2017 before his hip injury got the better of him. His last Grand Slam final appearance came in 2016 when he won the Wimbledon.
Players have been confined to their rooms
Upon reaching Australia, as many as 72 players have been largely confined to their rooms for two weeks after passengers on their flights tested positive. They can only leave their rooms only for a few hours per day to practice. Besides, the asymptomatic Murray was unable to come to an agreement over quarantine, despite being in constructive talks with tournament director Craig Tiley.