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Murray attempts to get back in the top 4

Andy Murray is going to be one of the 8 players that will participate in the tour finals in the United Kingdom next month.

Murray was not looking like making it to that event a few months back as he was having a troublesome time on the tour and he had gone down pretty low in the world rankings. At one point of time, he was not even in top 10.

But, with a couple of title wins, the Scot pushed himself up and now, he is very close to displacing the Swiss player Stanislas Wawrinka from the 4th position.

However, for that, he will have to beat the no. 1 player in the World Novak Djokovic in the Round of 8 in the ongoing BNP Paribas Open tomorrow and then, will have to win that tournament which will not be easy for him despite the purple patch that he is having right now.

In the press conference ahead of his upcoming clash against Djokovic, when Murray was asked about the chances of him getting to no. 4 in the rankings, he said, “A lot of people asked me this year if it’s possible for me now to get there in top 4 again ever in my career. So, I would be really happy if I am able to do that.”

“As far as Stan is concerned, the kind of tennis he has played this year, he obviously deserves that ranking. If I have to leave him behind or Rafa or even Novak for that matter, I will have to be in the form of my life.”

The highest ranking that Murray has achieved thus far in his career is 2. He had achieved that towards the end of the 2009 season.

Monfils withdraws From Tournament

Mary Pierce’s countryman, Gael Monfils, has taken his name back from the Citi Open which is going to start from tomorrow in Washington. The reason behind it is believed to be his knee injury.

The injuries have made Monfils withdraw himself from quite a few tournaments in the ongoing season.

He had not taken part in a couple of events in the first quarter of the season because of his ankle problem and now, because of his knee problem, he has withdrawn from two more tournaments this month i.e. the Atlanta Open and the Citi Open.

Monfils has not played any match since his exit from the Wimbledon Championships. His journey at the All England Club had ended in the second round only as he had been knocked out by Jiri Vesely of Czech Republic.

Monfils had done alright in the French Open though qualifying for the Round of 8.

The Frenchman gave his all in the quarter finals as well at Roland Garros, but, his effort didn’t prove to be good enough for Andy Murray who managed to defeat him in 5 sets to make it to the semis.

The Citi Open is considered to be a fantastic warm up tournament ahead of the US Open. So, Monfils would be gutted to be missing it. But, he has got no option really. It would not have been wise on his part to risk the injury.

Monfils, who was in top 10 in the official ATP rankings in 2011, is presently ranked 21st in the world. He is third among the French players behind Richard Gasquet and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

Monfils hasn’t had a Grand Slam glory under his name so far. He had reached the Round of 4 in the 2008 French Open and that’s his best performance in a slam till date.

Should Murray Keep Mauresmo?

The topic which is being discussed in the British media quite frequently these days is the future of Andy Murray-Amelie Mauresmo relationship as player-coach. Whether the Scot should part ways with the 35-year old former French player or he should trust her and give her a long contract extension, everybody seems to have an opinion on this.

Some are saying that it’s unfair to blame Mauresmo for what has happened with Murray in the recent tournaments as she just hasn’t had enough time to work on the game of the player.

The other section believes that the she is just not good enough for the post that has been given to her.

Murray was not short of options when he was searching for a new coach, but, he opted for Mauresmo because he thought that the Frenchwoman would help him improve on the mental front. That’s what he had said in one of his interviews.

Let’s see how strong a person Mauresmo was mentally during her playing days. She played professional tennis for about 15 years and during that period; she just lifted two slam trophies. Now, the skills that she had had; it is not a good number at all. She should have won a lot more, but, she couldn’t and that’s due to her not so good temperament. She herself used to have confidence problem when she was active as a player. So, how did Murray trust her to get him better temperamentally? That’s an important question.

Mauresmo does have helped some players in the recent times, but, helping players and being a player’s permanent coach are two different things especially when the player is of the stature of Murray.

If Mauresmo continues, she can still have a successful stint with Murray. Nobody knows. But, the possibility of that happening is less, that’s for sure

Murray Unsure About New Head Coach

Andy Murray has said that he is not sure if he would be able to appoint a new head coach before the start of this year’s Wimbledon Championship.

Murray hasn’t had anybody as head coach since the last 3 months. Ivan Lendl who helped the Scot achieve a lot of success parted ways with him earlier this year. Thereafter, a lot of names have popped up including some of the former greats, but, Murray hasn’t got in touch with anybody.

He, however, had disclosed in one of his interviews a couple of weeks back that he had decided who was going to be his next coach, but, he would appoint him only at an appropriate time.

After his defeat against Rafael Nadal in the semi final of the French Open, when Murray was asked about the coach appointment, he said, “There is no development in that regard in the last couple of weeks. I haven’t had a chat with anyone. May be in the near future, I would approach somebody. I am not sure, but, let’s see.”

Meanwhile, Murray admitted the fact that the defeat that he suffered against Nadal was not easy to sink in.

Talking about the game, the Scot said, “You get frustrated when you lose matches like these. I think I tried too many things in desperation and lost the plot. I probably needed to be a little more relaxed.”

“You don’t forget such days in a heartbeat. It takes time, but, a lot of games have been coming up and it’s important for me to shift my focus onto them. I can’t change what has already happened. So, it’s better to think about future.”

The next tournament that Murray will participate in is the Aegon Championships.

MURRAY IS THROUGH

Generally in those tournaments which get played on hard courts, Andy Murray is considered as a very tough man to beat because his game is just ideal for that type of surfaces, but, surprisingly, the Scot has never been able to be at his dominating best in the BNP Paribas Open in his career so far.

He always struggles there and he is doing so this year as well. Although, he has won both his matches and has got into the 4th round of the ongoing tournament, but, in both those matches, his performances were just ordinary.

The player which Murray was up against in the third round was Jiri Vesely who is placed more than 70 positions lower than him in the world rankings, but, despite that, the Scot couldn’t crush him. He was in fact in danger of being crushed himself at one point of time as after losing the first set, he had got trailed in the second set too, but, he somehow managed the situation and improved his game just in time to win the last two sets by slender margins to seal the match.

In the post match interview, Murray said, “The standard of tennis was not very high during the match. Both of us were in poor nick and made a lot of mistakes. I am glad that in the latter parts of the match, I played a bit better and won.”

Murray went through an operation not so long ago. So, he was bound to be a little clumsy coming into this season, but, not this much. It seems he just has no rhythm at all and that’s a danger sign for him with matches against the big players coming up.

In the next round, Murray will be facing either Alejandro Falla or Milos Raonic.

MURRAY WINNER

Andy Murray has defeated Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland in his second match in the ongoing Mubadala World Tennis Championship. Murray won the match in the straight sets by 6-3, 6-4.

With this win, the British superstar has made sure that he would finish at no. 5 in the tournament.

This is the first victory that Murray has pulled off after his back operation. He hadn’t looked anywhere close to his best in his previous match against the Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, but, against, Wawrinka, he looked fluent and won with ease.

Wawrinka is the same player who had knocked Murray out of the US Open last season. He beat him in the quarter final round and didn’t let him win that tournament for the second time in a row. The British player would have been very happy to avenge that loss.

Talking to the reporters in the post match interview, Murray said, “My purpose of coming here was to play a few matches against the top players and I am glad that I was up against two very good players in the last two games.”

When asked what he has to say regarding his fitness, Murray said, “I would say it’s pretty good at the moment, but, when you remain on the sidelines for such a long time, you need a few matches. It’s good that I got a couple of them here. It’s only going to help me.”

After that interview, Murray didn’t waste any time at all and went back to have some practice. That shows how determined he is to get back to full rhythm.

The next tournament that Murray is going to feature in is the Qatar Open which is going to start in about 15 days’ time.