Andy Murray admits he might be closer to retirement

Murray has not won a title since 2019.
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The last time Andy Murray had a decent won-loss record for an entire year was seven years ago. He has been oft-injured and has a chunk of metal in his right hip allowing him to play tennis. He seemingly really loves the sport as he no longer challenges for titles, but he keeps playing nonetheless.

But Andy Murray admitted in 2023 that he was no longer having fun playing. His first-round match at the Australian Open is not going to make him feel any better. Murray didn't just lose to 30th-seeded Tomas Martin Etcheverry, the Brit was wiped out 6-4 6-2 6-2.

Watching great players diminish to the point where they look nothing like their former selves is rough for tennis fans. But we are simply seeing what the players are doing. We are not living the sport day-to-day and knowing what it is like to challenge and win Grand Slam titles and no longer even competing for ATP 250 titles.

Andy Murray is slowly inching toward retirement

Retiring and fully committing to retire is tough for someone who is 55 or 60. But for an athlete who is only 36 years old knowing how to call it quits can be impossible. That is something one can train for.

Even after losing so badly to Etcheverry, Murray was not quite ready in his post-match press conference to retire, but he said he is not quite sure he will play in Melbourne again. Murray said, "It's a definite possibility that will be the last time I play (at the Australian Open). I think probably because of how the match went and everything, I don't know...In comparison to the matches that I played here last year, it's the complete opposite feeling walking off the court."

Murray has been in this same spot several times before, of course. He was unsure he would be able to play again after injuring his hip. One wonders if Rafael Nadal might have called Andy Murray after Nadal injured his hip in the 2023 Australian Open and asked how Murray got through being hurt emotionally. I am not sure Murray would have known the answer, though.

In the documentary, Andy Murray: Resurfacing, about what Murray did to get back on the court after hip surgery, what was clear is he did not know how to resolve not playing professional tennis again. We should hope that Murray simply calls it a day before he gets horribly injured again.

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