Andy Murray advised to use clay-court season as preparation for Wimbledon

ATP Tour
Andy Murray on the practise court

There remains a big question mark over Andy Murray’s plans for the next few months, but his former coach Alex Corretja feels he should play the clay-court season and then consider skipping Roland Garros.

Former world No 1 Murray is yet to play competitive tennis this year after he withdrew from the ATP Cup, Australian Open, Open Sud de France and the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament.

“The bone bruising is taking longer to heal than first thought,” the 32-year-old said after his decision to withdraw from Montpellier and Rotterdam.

“I don’t want to rush anything or put a timeline on my recovery. I’m going to listen to my body and step back on the court to compete when the time is right.”

He is yet to confirm when he will be back on the tennis court, but he no doubt wants to be 100% for the grass-court season and Wimbledon.

The clay-court season precedes the grass campaign and it can be taxing while Murray hasn’t played on the red dirt since 2017.

Eurosport pundit Corretja, though, believes he should use the clay to prepare for the grass season.

“I really don’t know exactly how he feels now but clay, he should use it to get enough matches to be ready for grass,” the Spaniard said.

“Because if he skips the clay-court season, there is going to be such a long gap before the grass. And grass is only three weeks, so it is difficult to get the feeling of so many matches.

“He needs to go thinking that those matches are the best preparation I could have to be ready for Wimbledon, and that’s the only thing he needs to know.

“The more matches he gets, the better, but he doesn’t need to get overcooked. He’s got experience and his body is suffering.

“If he will be playing so many matches, it won’t change anything, because for him to reach the semi-finals in Madrid or in another tournament, it’s not going to make any difference.

“But, if something’s going to make a difference for him, it’s to have a good tournament at Wimbledon. And that means to be healthy.”

Playing at Roland Garros is a different kettle of fish though as Grand Slams are best of five sets and playing a lot of long matches may not be in Murray’s best long-term interest.

“It’s very demanding, and maybe you play three matches, those three matches, they can be five sets, four sets, five sets, and you are only in the fourth round. And if you are only in the fourth round, for Andy, it’s nothing,” Corretja continued.

“Maybe he should say, ‘OK, I go back home, I stay in London, I practise’, and just get ready for Queen’s.”

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