Andy Murray does the ‘smart’ thing as he withdraws from Dubai event

Andy Murray disappointed

It won’t come as a big surprise, but Andy Murray has decided to pull out of the Dubai Tennis Championships in order to recover following another exhausting week.

The three-time Grand Slam winner finished runner-up to Daniil Medvedev at the Qatar Open on Saturday, but he admitted during the presentation ceremony and in his post-match press conference that the long hours on court have started to take its toll.

Four of his five matches in Doha went to deciding sets and his total hours on court for the week reached nearly 12 hours with the final against Medvedev the shortest match as it took “only” one hour and 46 minutes to complete.

Afterwards he admitted: “At my age and with some of the issues that I’ve got, I do have to be mindful of those things, and I can’t just, you know, just keep going until something happens.

“You know, I need to be a bit smarter with that. So I’ll chat to my team and see how I feel tomorrow. I’m flying to Dubai. Then, yeah, we’ll see where we go from there.”

“Those issues” he referred to is of course his hip and Dubai organisers confirmed on Monday that the former world No 1 has pulled out of the tournament.

“We regret to inform you that Andy Murray is unable to participate in this year’s tournament,” they said in a post on social media. “Andy has been dealing with a recurring hip injury that has unfortunately forced him out of Dubai.

“We wish Andy a speedy recovery and hope to see him back on the court in Dubai soon.”

Murray will next feature at the Sunshine Double as he has signed up for both the ATP Masters 1000 doubleheader, the Indian Wells Open and the Miami Open. The Indian Wells main draw starts on March 8 while the Miami event starts on March 20.

The three-time Grand Slam winner, who also spent nearly 14 hours on court during a run to the third round of the Australian Open, surged nearly 20 places up the the ATP Rankings on the back of his efforts at the Qatar Open as he is now No 52.

Alexander Shevchenko will take Murray’s place in the main draw and he takes on fifth seed Hubert Hurkacz in the first round. The winner of that clash could face top seed and world No 1 Novak Djokovic – who is back in action for the first time since the Australian Open – in the quarter-final.

READ MORE: Andy Murray’s 2023 tennis schedule: Where is he competing next and his season so far…