Andy Murray to make clay court return with Madrid Open
Three-time Grand Slam winner Andy Murray will be making a return to clay court tournament with the upcoming Madrid Open. Murray, who is a two-timer winner at the Madrid Open, has been training in Florida with his coach Ivan Lendl. Currently ranked 83rd in the ATP standings, Murray had initially opted out of the clay court events. Here's more.
The former world number one will be receiving a wild card for the ATP 1000 Masters event. Others who have handed wild cards include five-time ATP singles winner Lucas Pouille, Intesa Sanpaolo, and Next Gen ATP Finals contenders Carlos Valero and Jack Draper. World number three Alexander Zverev will head the event as the defending champion. Zverev beat Matteo Berrettini 6-7, 6-4, 6-3.
- Murray would be making a comeback post a career-saving hip surgery.
- The 34-year-old had initially decided to skip the clay-court tournaments.
- Excessive wear and tear on the clay courts had earlier Murray's aggravated injury issues.
- This almost resulted in him missing out on last year's Wimbledon.
- While he's available for Madrid Open and Italian Open, he will be unavailable for the Roland Garros.
The 2022 Madrid Open will be played on clay courts in Park Manzanares in Madrid, Spain. The tournament is slated to take place between May 1-May 8. The top eight seeded players will straightaway enter the tournament's second round. Novak Djokovic, Alexander Zverev, Rafael Nadal, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Casper Ruud, Andrey Rublev, Felix Auger- Aliassime, and Cameron Norrie form the top eight seeds in order.
Murray has a 27-9 win-loss record here. He has been crowned the winner on two occasions (2008, 2015). Notably, Murray outclassed five-time winner Rafael Nadal in straight sets in 2015, winning by 6-3, 6-3. He was the runner-up in 2016, and a quarter-finalist in 2009, 2010, and 2013. He exited in the third round in 2006-07 2011, 2014, and 2017.
The Briton has a 10-8 record in the season underway. He finished as the runner-up in the Sydney International, losing to former world number 14 Aslan Karatsev 6-3, 6-3. He couldn't get past the second round in the Australian Open, Rotterdam Open, Qatar Open, Dubai Tennis Championships, Indian Wells, and Miami Open. He was ousted in the first round of Melbourne Summer Set 1.