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Andy Murray hints at retirement thoughts after Wimbledon exit to Denis Shapovalov

Andy Murray has indicated that he would consider his future in tennis if he was unable to find better form at Grand Slams than what he showed against Denis Shapovalov at Wimbledon in their third-round encounter. Murray came into this year’s Wimbledon having played little tennis after a number of injury issues.

A disappointing show at Queen’s left him with little match preparation for the start of Wimbledon.

And that rustiness showed at times in his first-round match against No 24 seed Nikoloz Basilashvili.

Murray should have wrapped the win up in three sets after marching to a 5-0 lead in the third, only to suffer a collapse in form with his opponent forcing a fourth.

There was even more drama in his second-round match against Oscar Otte as Murray rolled back the years to record a miraculous comeback victory in five sets.

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But both those matches saw Murray spend seven hours on the court through the opening two rounds.

Murray acknowledged in his post-match press conference after losing to Shapovalov in straight sets that spending that long on the courts put him at a disadvantage from the off.

Having played just a handful of matches over the past six months, Murray knew that preserving his body was key to any success he was going to have at Wimbledon.

And the two-time Wimbledon champion also conceded that to challenge someone like Shapovalov at this stage of his recovery, his game would “need to be spot-on”.

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While Murray walks away from Wimbledon – his first appearance in the grasscourt Grand Slam in the men’s singles since 2017 – with plenty of positives.

The 34-year-old also admits that he may well hold discussions on what his future will be if he’s unable to string a run of tournaments together to help improve his ranking.

“There is a part of me that feels a bit like I have put in so much work the last three months and, you know, ultimately didn’t play how I would want and expect, and it’s like is it worth it?” Murray said.

“Is all of that training and everything that you’re doing in the gym, you know, unless you’re able to like practice and, you know, improve your game and get matches and continue, get, you know, a run of tournaments, like, is it worth all of the work that you’re doing?

“You know, there is part of me that feels like, yes, it is, because I had, you know, great memories and stuff from this event and playing in some brilliant atmosphere.

“But then, also, I finished the match tonight and I’m saying to my team, I’m like, That’s just — yeah, I’m just not happy with how I played.

“So unless me and my team can find a way of keeping me on the court for, you know, a consistent period of time and allow me to practice the way that I need to to compete with these guys, then, yeah, then that’s when, you know, the discussions about what I do next will come in.

“Because I have genuinely put a lot into this to get to this point, but I’m not being able to practice and prepare how I need to to perform how I would like at these events.

“Like I said, I’m not expecting and saying, like, I would beat Denis Shapovalov. He’s a brilliant player. But I feel like I can do a lot better than what I did this evening.”

Author: Stuart Ballard
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Andy Murray vs Denis Shapovalov LIVE: Wimbledon scores as Murray loses first set

Shapovalov takes the first set!

Shapovalov* 6-4 Murray

WHAT DRAMA! Shapovalov survives three break points which would have thrust Murray right back into contention for this first set. 

As it turns out, it wasn’t to be. The two-time champion could not quite see it over the line and the Canadian takes a deserved one-set lead. 

Shapovalov 5-4 Murray*

Momentum: regained. Murray holds serve to bring him to within one of the Canadian, although he still has it all to do if he is to take the lead. 

Shapovalov* 5-3 Murray

That’s more like it from Murray! Not many saw that coming, a 40-0 break of serve which gives the Scot a lifeline as he tries to work his way back into this first set. 

Shapovalov 5-2 Murray*

Finally, Murray is back on the board. That is his first game since the very first in the match. The first set now looks to be out of reach for the Scot, but he may as well try and regain some momentum heading into the second. 

Shapovalov* 5-1 Murray

Murray has a good go at Shapovalov’s service game, but he could not quite do enough to knock him off his perch as he romps towards a one-set lead. 

Shapovalov 4-1 Murray*

Even at this early stage, the crowd can sense that Murray needs some extra support. Unfortunately, their cries go unanswered as a series of top-class shots from Shapovalov seal his second consecutive break of serve after a long battle at deuce. 

Shapovalov* 3-1 Murray

Shapovalov really is looking formiddable in the early exchanges. He pounces on his opportunity after the break of serve to take his service game without reply. 

Shapovalov 2-1 Murray*

After racing into a 30-0 lead, Murray lost his grip on the game. Both men sat down as Murray’s miss looked to have handed Shapovalov a break, only to be ushered back onto the court when hawkeye revealed otherwise. 

Still, the result did not change as the Canadian won a superb rally to give himself an advantage here in the early stages of the match. 

Shapovalov* 1-1 Murray

Some extremely eye-catching work from Shapovalov, although he made hard work of drawing the first set level at one game apiece. 

Murray became the latest victim of the court’s slippery surface during a tense battle at deuce. 

Shapovalov 0-1 Murray*

A great start for Andy Murray who storms into a 1-0 lead. The crowd, understandably, are loving it!

(* indicates serve)

Andy Murray vs Denis Shapovalov LIVE

6pm: Andy Murray is hoping the Wimbledon grass, which has caused a number of injuries to players already this week, is less slippy than it has been.

“Yeah, it is slippy. And it’s not – it actually, it felt better today than it did when I played my first match, and hopefully it will continue to get better throughout the tournament,” Murray said after beating Otte.

“But I don’t remember it being quite like that. I know guys, you know, fall down a lot at the beginning of Queen’s, and it happens at Wimbledon, as well. That’s the nature of grass court tennis.

“But it just does feel like the way that players are falling down. Like, there was one where I ran back for a lob, and it was — yeah, it was close to being quite bad. I saw Isner fell and did a sort of similar thing like moving forwards today.

“Yeah, it’s just, yeah, you just don’t want it to be like that. Hopefully it dries out a little bit in the next few days. Some warmer weather I think would help with that. But it’s been a tough few days and a few players have obviously got hurt during matches, and a few have been lucky, me being one of them this evening.”

5.45pm: Good evening and welcome to Express Sport’s live coverage of Andy Murray’s Wimbledon clash with Denis Shapovalov.

The Scot needed four sets to knock out 24th seed Nikoloz Basilashvili in his opening match of the tournament.

German world No 151 Oscar Otte then pushed Murray the distance in the second round.

Tenth seed Shapovalov is expected to be a much sterner test than Murray’s previous opponents – but stay tuned to see if the three-time Grand Slam champion can produce another memorable display on Centre Court.

Author: Charlie Gordon
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