Andy Murray supported by Boris Becker as he shares an ‘unpopular opinion’

Ewan West
Andy Murray speaking in Doha
Andy Murray chats to the media during a press conference

Former world No 1 Andy Murray shared what he described as an “unpopular opinion” by suggesting a change he feels should be made to the tennis tour. 

The three-time major champion believes South America should have “its own dedicated swing” with a Masters 1000 event because of the support and atmosphere generated by fans at existing tournaments in the region.

The ATP Tour currently features a series of four clay-court tournaments held in South America in February named the ‘Golden Swing’, with this series starting in 2001.

Since 2020, the swing has featured two tournaments in Argentina (the Cordoba Open and the Argentina Open in Buenos Aires), one event in Brazil (the Rio Open), and one in Chile (the Chile Open in Santiago). The Rio Open is the biggest tournament of the series as an ATP 500, while the other three events are ATP 250s.

The 2024 Rio Open is ongoing, with Argentine duo Sebastian Baez and Mariano Navone set to face off in the final on Sunday. The swing will then conclude in Santiago next week.

While the ‘Golden Swing’ tournaments have attracted some top players like Rafael Nadal and Carlos Alcaraz over the years, many of the ATP Tour’s stars have not featured in the continent.

This is largely due to hard-court events in Europe and the Middle East taking place at the same time, with a lot of players preferring these tournaments to avoid switching surfaces ahead of Indian Wells and Miami in March.

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In a post on X, Murray called for South American tournaments to have their own spot on the calendar and for a Masters 1000 event to be held in the continent.

“Unpopular opinion 🚨 South America should have its own dedicated swing on the tennis tour with its own masters series,” the 36-year-old Brit wrote.

“The way the fans support the tournaments there is incredible. Amazing atmospheres and 🎾 is clearly part of their sporting culture. Vamos @atptour !”

Murray experienced one of the highlights of his career in South America when he defended his Olympic title to win his second gold medal at the 2016 Games in Rio.

Despite Murray labelling his opinion “unpopular”, many players, fans and tennis figures agreed with him, including former world No 1 Boris Becker.

“Why unpopular?!? You’re absolutely right about your opinion Andy! Tennis 🎾 should go to countries/continents where tennis is booming,” declared the six-time Grand Slam winner.

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