High praise for Andy Murray from Rafael Nadal’s former coach Toni Nadal
Andy Murray was the “only one who really competed” with Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal during their heyday, according to Toni Nadal.
The Big Three have dominated tennis in the past two decades, winning 52 Grand Slams and more than 200 singles titles between them.
For a while it was considered the Big Four as Murray won 45 singles titles, including three majors and two Olympic gold medals, and spent a total of 41 weeks at the top of the world rankings.
However, his hip injury got progressively worse while he was No 1 in the world in 2016 and he soon spent more time on the sidelines than on the court.
After an unsuccessful hip operation at the start of 2018, he announced before this year’s Australian Open that he planned to retire at Wimbledon.
He underwent hip surgery again in January this year, but it remains to be seen if he will return to action to have a farewell at SW19.
Nadal’s former coach, Uncle Toni, believes Murray was “always there, very close to” the Big Three during his peak.
“For tennis lovers, Murray is a great player not just for winning three Grand Slams but he was the only one who really competed with (Roger) Federer, (Novak) Djokovic and Rafael,” he said during an interview with Cadena Ser, which was translated by Tennis World.
“He was always there, very close to them. Funnily enough, before going through all these issues, he had his best year, he was world No 1 playing at a high level.
“If he can recover, it would be good. It’s not easy because hip issues are complicated, several high-level players were forced to retire and hopefully, it’s not the case.”
More from Tennis365:
Umpire Fergus Murphy explains why officials avoid getting ‘pally’ with players
In part two of our interview with umpire Fergus Murphy, he says reveals the “secret for all sports officials”.
‘Winning is what sport is all about’ – Andy Murray reacts to one of his best wins of 2021
The former world number dispatched the home favourite favourite 4-6 6-3 6-2.
Andy Murray accepts wildcard as he prepares to return to scene of one of his great wins
Murray completed a comeback few believed was possible when he won the ATP event in Antwerp in 2019.
Coaching guru insists Emma Raducanu still has much to prove after US Open win
She is the new queen of tennis…
Roger Federer on his latest fitness battle and Novak Djokovic’s US Open final defeat
Roger Federer has not made…
Emma Raducanu makes a leap in the tennis rankings without striking a ball
Raducanu has enjoyed a welcome rankings boost, without even striking a ball in anger.
Emma Raducanu reveals her ultimate Grand Slam dream in engaging Chinese interview
Raducanu has admitted she has a dream to win Wimbledon after her stunning US Open triumph
Andy Murray wants British tennis to change perceptions after Emma Raducanu’s win
The teenager ended a 44-year wait for a British woman to win a grand slam singles title.
Andy Murray preparing for a return to the ATP Tour in France
Murray has accepted a wildcard to play another tournament in France.
Remarkable statistics confirm Daniil Medvedev is the new king of hard courts
Daniil Medvedev can now be hailed as the new king of hard courts.
Exclusive – Myleene Klass believes Emma Raducanu can inspire a generation
Myleene Klass has revealed Emma Raducanu has inspired her daughters to reach for the stars after her stunning win at the US Open.