Tennis

’Life-changing’ operation rekindles Andy Murray’s love of tennis

Former world No. 1 looking forward to playing again, after life-changing hip-resurfacing operation

Andy Murray has said that surgery helped him rediscover his passion for tennis as he prepares to make his comeback at Queen's Club this week.

The 32-year-old will feature in the men's doubles alongside Spaniard Feliciano Lopez tomorrow, five months after undergoing a hip-resurfacing operation.

"There have been a number of times over the past 18 months where I did want to stop," he said.

"I didn't want to play any more. I was getting no enjoyment out of tennis at all, whether that be training, practice, matches.

"I wasn't bothered about winning matches either because it wasn't fun.

"Now I like playing tennis, getting out on the court and hitting balls. I want to keep playing if I can because I enjoy it."

Murray said at the Australian Open in January that he intended to retire after Wimbledon due to crippling pain that stopped him from doing everyday tasks like pulling on socks.

The three-time Grand Slam winner admitted that the progress he has made since then has been better than anticipated.

"I didn't expect to be in this position," said the former world No. 1. "I didn't know how it would feel if I went and had the operation. But it has been brilliant, completely life-changing for me from where I was.

"I'm looking forward to getting back out there, but I don't know what to expect and I'm not putting any kind of expectations on myself.

"Just being out on the tennis court and being pain-free is enough."

Murray, the 2013 and 2016 Wimbledon winner, said he thought Wimbledon will be won once again by either Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal or defending champion Novak Djokovic.

The trio have captured 14 Wimbledon titles between them. Australia's Lleyton Hewitt, in 2002, was the last man outside of the "Big Four" to triumph at Wimbledon.

But Greek star Stefanos Tsitsipas is determined to help break the Wimbledon title stranglehold of the "Big Four".

The 20-year-old, who is top seed at Queen's this week, said it is time for either himself or the likes of Alexander Zverev to step up as a potential champion at the All England Club next month.

Tsitsipas, who reached his first Grand Slam semi-final in January at the Australian Open - knocking out Federer on the way - hoped there would be a new name on the trophy.

"I want to be honest. I would love to see something different this year and hopefully it will be me," Tsitsipas said on Sunday.

"It would give it a little bit of variety, something different to these guys.

"We are responsible as the new generation to work hard to come up with something new and our best games to beat those guys."

Tsitsipas, who arrives ranked sixth in the world but having lost to the unheralded Chilean Nicolas Jarry on grass at Den Bosch in Holland last week, says the younger players must believe in themselves.

"It is only a matter of character and feeling responsible for what we are doing on the court," he said.

"I think positively and hope at Wimbledon this will happen." - REUTERS

Tennis