Andy Roddick gives passionate Andy Murray verdict amid retirement calls

Andy Murray and Andy Roddick

Andy Roddick has launched a passionate defence of Andy Murray amid suggestions the British tennis great should retire given his recent struggles. 

The 2003 US Open champion expressed his disbelief at the notion Murray was “tarnishing his legacy” by continuing to play and argued the 36-year-old is instead adding to his “mystique.”

Murray fell to a 5-7, 4-6 loss to world No 66 Tomas Machac in the opening round of the ATP 250 tournament in Marseille on Tuesday to take his record in 2024 to 0-4. The world No 49 has lost his last six competitive matches and nine of his last 10 going back to September during a brutal run of form.

Last week, the three-time major champion suffered a disappointing three-set defeat to world No 112 Benoit Paire in the first round of the ATP 250 tournament in Montpellier.

The loss sparked some to question whether Murray should continue playing given his recent run, with one story on the BBC Sport website suggesting he may be “tarnishing” his legacy.

In a post on X / Twitter, the former world No 1 hit back at the article and asserted his intention to keep going: “Tarnishing my legacy? Do me a favour. I’m in a terrible moment right now I’ll give you that.

“Most people would quit and give up in my situation right now. But I’m not most people and my mind works differently. I won’t quit. I will keep fighting and working to produce the performances I know I’m capable of.”

Roddick backed up Murray’s response by tweeting: “Preach! Imagine telling an accomplished iconic adult your opinion on what they should choose for work and when they should do it…. This is such a dumb, thirsty article. Can’t take a legacy away. Accomplishment lives forever.”

Speaking with journalist John Wertheim in the latest episode of his Served podcast, Roddick addressed the topic in greater depth and strongly supported Murray.

“Did you see the Murray thing this week where the journalist basically was just talking out loud? Maybe I’m overly sensitive or something,” the American said.

“The gist of it is like, okay, the bit that really p***ed me off is like, ‘is it time for Andy Murray to retire?’ Okay, I think it’s a little bit of a tacky question in the first place, but also, ‘is what he’s doing now tarnishing his legacy?’ As if what he does in Montpellier takes away Wimbledon titles, US Open titles.

“It’s amazing how it’s like, ‘oh my gosh, all we want if for this drought from the 20s to end.’ But then six years later it’s like, ‘but not if you lose in the first round of Montpellier.’ I mean, am I overreacting to this?”

The former world No 1 also highlighted the fact Murray is playing tournaments because his ranking allows him to enter, rather than relying on wildcards.

“He’s earned the points to qualify, he’s not taking these wildcards. He’s getting in on merit, he’s a top 50 player right now, on one leg. So I feel like it’s adding to the mystique of Andy Murray,” Roddick continued.

“I’m sitting here going, ‘did I ever love the game as much as he loves it going out there on one leg?’ Delivering a product that would be sub par to what he knows is his best. He’s seen the best in the world, he is eyes wide open.

“He’s one of the most intelligent people that we have in our game, and you’re telling him that he can’t participate in a job that he’s earned — not by virtue of someone giving him the job — by the fact that he’s one of the best 50 players in the world and he can enter any tournament he wants where the cut-off is above 50 in the world.”

READ MORE: Andy Murray suggests he will make major change in bid to end nightmare losing streak

Latest