Andy Murray refuses to give up on career despite dismal start to 2024

Andy Murray during a match in Marseille
Andy Murray in action in Marseille

Former world No 1 Andy Murray still believes that he has more to offer tennis despite what he termed a “difficult” start to 2024.

The 2024 season so far has been one in which Murray has yet to win a competitive match.

Recent back-to-back exits in ATP 250 tournaments in Marseille and Montpellier have led to the 36-year-old facing claims that he is tainting his own legacy by refusing to give up the sport in time.

Murray opened up on his struggles in a recent chat with to Sky Sports and revealed how he is looking to learn from this experience and turna round his form in a hurry.

“Tennis-wise it hasn’t been a great start to the year. I’ve never experienced a period like this as a professional. It’s been difficult, a new experience for me (which) is not the nicest, but good to experience new things and try and learn from them,” said Murray.

“When I do get myself out of it and start to feel better, hopefully I’ll be stronger for it, but it’s been hard. I’ve not been playing well and winning as many matches as I would like, so I’m hoping I can turn it around here.”

Murray answered that it was more of a combination of the two when asked if there was a mental or physical barrier preventing him from playing at his best.

“It’s probably a combination of the two,” Murray conceded.

“Physically I’m not expecting to feel how I did when I was 20, so it’s hard when you get to your mid to late 30s to stay at the level required to beat the best players.

“Certainly, tennis-wise I know I can play a lot better than I have been.”

Murray claims that while his tournament preparation has been strong, he has struggled to maintain the same rhythm on the tennis court. Despite this, he is optimistic that he will soon return to his best playing.

“I’ve never really experienced playing really well in practice and not being able to translate it to a match court before, it was always the opposite for me,” said the former world No 1.

“I was never a great practice player, I didn’t use to win practice matches, exhibition matches, it’s been the complete opposite for me recently. I know there’s better tennis in me than I’m showing just now, but I’m hoping I can turn it around.”

Murray stated that he intends to continue playing and will not be swayed by the opinions of others, even as there has been a lot of conjecture on his future.

“When I was in my early 20s, I would have mainly young fans that would come up to you and ask for autographs, now I get more older people, who’s bodies are falling apart,” said Murray.

“They are kind of like ‘it’s great that you keep going it’s inspired me to get out and keep training’, so the demographic has changed a little bit.

“But it’s nice, I can do whatever I want. I don’t have to do what fans, journalists or anyone is telling me to do. Qualifying for all these tournaments on my right, on my ranking and all the matches that I’ve won, I want to keep playing just now, so I’m not going to stop.”

READ MORE: Former British No 1 wonders why Andy Murray faces harsher questions than Stan Wawrinka