‘He was definitely pain-free’ – Tim Henman gives major Andy Murray fitness update

Andy Murray in China Open action

Tim Henman has issued a major Andy Murray fitness update, saying he believes the former world number one is ‘definitely pain-free.’

Henman has a close relationship with Murray and has spent some time with him at his training base this week.

Murray was scheduled to return at the Miami Open before it was cancelled due to the coronavirus crisis, with further cancellations meaning he cannot attempt a comeback for at least six weeks.

Henman, though, has been incredibly encouraged with what he has seen.

“Having watched him play this week, he was definitely pain-free and so I’d think at the moment, that doesn’t seem like it’ll be necessary,” said Henman on the chances of Murray needed more surgery.

“It’d be very frustrating if he did need another operation – any time you open up the body and have surgery, it takes time to recover so I’m sure he’s very keen to avoid that.”

“I love the fact that he still wants to be out there trying to get back.

“He’s really in uncharted territory because normally when you have an injury, there’s lots of others who have had that same injury but that’s not the case for Andy Murray.

“There’s lots of people who have had new hips but not at the age of 32 and not those who want to get back to playing world-class tennis. So it’s amazing how well he’s done already.

“Seeing him on the practice court and seeing how much he’s enjoying himself, I think it’s incredibly impressive, especially considering what he’s achieved in the game already.

Andy Murray and Tim Henman

“So I just hope he can get back to playing on the main tour.

“Injuries really go with the territory though when you’re a tennis player and you compete as much as they do, you’re going to get niggles.

“Federer has done as good a job as anyone of avoiding injuries but he’s out at the moment having had knee surgery.

“So it does happen and you just have to manage it and make sure you’re patient and you wait until you’re 100 percent fit and healthy to come back.”

Despite the positive update, Henman does still urge caution on Murray’s comeback, admitting that there is a window of opportunity that is slowly closing.

“It’s hard because time doesn’t stand still,” Henman added.

“He’s 32-years-old and he’s not getting any younger and that’s where it’ll be hard because time isn’t on his side.

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“But it’s amazing to come back and win a tournament on the tour – to win Antwerp like he did last year was an incredible achievement and I think he can get back playing even better than that.

“To compete over seven matches over five sets like he’ll need to do to win grand slam titles will be very, very difficult.

“But as I’ve seen time and time again with Andy Murray, if you say to him he can’t do something, he certainly likes to prove people wrong.”

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