Andy Murray news: Former world No 1 says ex-players have encouraged him to ‘keep playing as long as he can’

That winning feeling for Andy Murray

He experienced several different emotions – including frustration and satisfaction – during his stuttering win in Dubai, but for Andy Murray”nothing will replace” the feeling of playing top-level tennis.

The three-time Grand Slam winner was made to work for his victory by qualifier Christopher O’Connell at the Dubai Tennis Championships as he lost the opening set against the Australian before bouncing back to win 6-7 (4-7), 6-3, 7-5.

Murray has had plenty of ups and downs over the past few weeks as he finished runner-up at the Sydney International before losing in the second round of the Australian Open. Last week in Qatar he claimed a solid opening round win before being hammered 6-0, 6-1 by Roberto Bautista Agut.

And he must have had flashbacks of the Bautista Agut drubbing against O’Connell on Monday, but that “very satisfying” feeling in the end makes it all worth it.

“I made it very difficult for myself out there,” he said. “I enjoyed the result. What went on in the middle was not so easy.

“I was very frustrated early in the match. I couldn’t quite find may game and he was dictating a lot of the rallies. But I managed to serve a little bit better as the match went along and that helped me a lot.

“I’ve spoken to a lot of ex-players and they keep telling me keep playing as long as I can, nothing will replace it. I still feel like I can compete at the highest level.

“It’s not easy. Physically it’s very challenging for me but winning matches like that is obviously very satisfying.”