After a brief rest period for a back injury, Andy Murray says he feels now on the eve of the Rome Tennis Masters. The Scot bypassed the Madrid blue clay masters so he could better prepare for the French Open.
“It was my decision to stop,” Murray answered Sunday when asked if Madrid was a good week to miss. “Everyone has been plodding on. People have been saying that I was much smarter than they were and so – Yes.
“Obviously the conditions there were not ideal and with the French Open just a couple of weeks away – I’m not going to have to make adjustments which I would have had to do from Madrid.”
Murray, who was a semifinalist last year in Rome losing to Novak Djokovic in a thriller, says the next four months of the tennis calendar will be tough and will determine the No. 1 ranking.
“I think it is very tough,” Murray said looking ahead. “Tennis is a physical sport. We have the French Open then Wimbledon and then the Olympics and it is only a couple of weeks after that the American Open and so – the next four months are going to be tough. They are going to decide pretty much who is going to finish up number one in the world with 4 major competitions and that is why everyone is working and every week and every day is important not only for training but also for rest.”
Murray added that he feels his second serve has improved and overall his clay game is better than where it was a year ago.
The fourth-ranked Murray lost in the quarterfinals at Monte Carlo to Tomas Berdych and the semifinals in Barcelona to Milos Raonic. He’ll celebrate his 25th birthday Tuesday playing against former French Open semifinalist David Nalbandian. Murray has never reached a claycourt final.
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