Location of Andy Murray’s final match becoming clear after Miami Open heroics

Kevin Palmer
Andy Murray will face Andrey Rublev in Indian Wells
Andy Murray celebrates winning at Indian Wells

It feels like Andy Murray has finally been liberated from his tennis nightmare.

Watching Murray performing at the Miami Open revived memories of the emotions he took his fans on throughout most of his remarkable career.

The highs and lows of his victory against Matteo Berrettini, before he turned in his best performance in many years to beat Tomas Martin Etcheverry in thrilling fashion.

Murray then played the match of the Miami Open so far as he lost in agonising fashion against an inspired Tomas Machac in a third round match that had the fans in raptures as he battled back from 5-2 down in the third set and came within two points of victory.

In the end, Machac came up with a finale to the match that was impossible for Murray to resist and while he was clearly emotional after his final match in Miami came to an end, he should feel optimistic about his week in one of his favourite locations.

Something clicked for Murray in Miami and he should head into what he suggests will be the final months of his career with a different mindset than he had a few days ago.

Murray conceded in an honest interview with Sky Sports Tennis correspondent Laura Robson before the match against Berrettini that he was not happy with his practice sessions or his performances on the court, yet he ended up playing his best tennis for many years at what was his last Miami Open.

His serve started firing in a manner that he needs to keep him competitive against younger rivals who move better and hit the ball a little harder than he does.

His double-handed backhand was firing in a manner we have not seen since he underwent hip surgery in 2019.

READ MORE: Emotional Andy Murray makes ‘sad’ confession about his ‘tennis home’ and family after Miami farewell

And crucially, the fire that has been lacking in Murray at times was burning with a ferocity that gave him a chance to cover up the flaws in his game and overwhelm opponents.

Murray concluded long ago that he will not win major tournaments in what is left of his career, but this great champion wants to go out on a high and if he plays as he did in Miami, he has a chance to do just that.

“It’s been pretty positive,” said Murray as he reflected on his three matches in Miami.

“There were some good signs in my game, definitely an improvement on the last few tournaments, not perfect but considering everything to be winning matches against the players I did and pushing Thomas like I did, I’m proud of myself because it’s extremely difficult to do what I’m doing with the issue that I have.

“To still be able to compete with these guys is a credit to myself and the work that I’ve done and the effort that I’ve put into this to keep myself in this position.”

Murray also suggested he is now looking forward to the end of his career as he added: “I am looking forward to the end now, give my best the next few months and get to be at home with my family.

“This tournament is particularly for me is an important one so it was a bit more emotional leaving the court today than it might be at some of the other events.”

Murray has not set a date for his final match, other than stating on several occasions that it will be at some point this summer.

The reason he has kept his end fate vague is to keep the door open in case he finds a key to unlocking the match wins he still believes he can produce.

Murray has hinted that he may try to play in a final Olympic Games before he retires, but his chances of securing a medal to go with his two golds and a silver from the 2012 and 2016 Olynpics are slim on clay courts in Paris.

So it has to be likely that he will now retire at Wimbledon in July, with these last few days fuelling his belief that there could still be moments of glory left for Murray before his story comes to an end.