Back Surgery Might End Andy Murray’s 2013 Season
by Sean Randall | September 19th, 2013, 1:16 pm

A largely uneventful week in tennis just got that much more newsworthy today. While one Top 10er, JW Tsonga, returned to the sport yesterday with a win, another is likely done for the season. Reports out of the UK are that Wimbledon champion Andy Murray will undergo back surgery next week.

Murray has been plagued by back issues the last few years and this season the Scot withdrew from the French Open to try to ease the lower back disc injury.

If Murray does go under the knife it’s doubtful he’ll be ready in time to play the London Finals which commence in about 45 days. But with Murray rounding into his prime, if the back needs a fixin’ then I guess this is the time do it. This way he’ll be 100% ready for a 2014 run at No. 1.

Since his title in Miami, Murray’s plays has been a mixed bag. He won Wimbledon, beating just one Top 20 player in Novak Djokovic, and Queen’s, but otherwise the only Top 20 win he’s had off grass the last six months is over Gilles Simon at Madrid.

Most recently Stan Wawrinka dusted him pretty good at the US Open a few weeks ago.

With Murray all but out of London, Roger Federer’s chances just improved significantly of qualifying for the final 8. Wawrinka, Richard Gasquet and Tsonga hopes have also been bolstered.

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49 Comments for Back Surgery Might End Andy Murray’s 2013 Season

the DA Says:

This is just the worst. It’s probably the wisest move to sacrifice the rest of 2013 in order to be fit for 2014. It’s just a pity he won’t experience returning to the 02 as Wimbledon champion. I bet that would’ve been something.

I knew it wouldn’t take long for the speculation over Federer’s (as well as other players) chances to qualify for the WTF to begin.

Anna Says:

This is horrible news. I hope it’s minimally invasive and Andy can be back on court for the start of the new year. A knee, a wrist, a shoulder is one thing, but back pain is the worst. Didn’t Roger have back pain at one time

hawkeye Says:

Beware the injury police, Muzza.


Jimmy Says:

I’ve said it before, he over-trains. Doing pull-ups with a 40 pound weight around your waist is insane, asking for trouble.

Ben Pronin Says:

40 pounds for pull ups isn’t so horrible, but it seems unnecessary for a tennis player. It’s tough to say, though.

Hawkeye, can you do without the ::

Jimmy Says:

The article says he should be able to start training for Australia in mid Nov – a 2 month recover for disc surgery? Really?

hawkeye Says:

Sure Ben!


Brando Says:

This is horrendous news!

Andy likely will be out of the top 4 possibly even by his return!


I hope, hope, hope he can at least make WTF.

skeezer Says:

bummer for Andy. hope he has a quick recovery :(. The sport will miss him.

Brando Says:

^Agree completely: Andy will be a big, big loss!

Back surgery is probably the wisest move I guess: he’s a young lad and you do not want a niggling back issue to bother you at all, especially if you are a professional athlete like Andy.

Margot Says:

Oh no :( :( :( :(
Newspaper reports say “minor surgery” whatever that is.
@ the DA
Have tickets for WTF, bummer :(

the DA Says:

@ Margot – Oh no, I forgot you had tickets. :( Some people are saying there is such a thing as minor surgery. Some who’ve had similar surgery say that they could ski 4 weeks afterwards. So I’m optimistic. It’d be great if he recovered in time to make the WTF even if not 100%.

Margot Says:

@ the DA
Don’t want him to rush recovery…even more me….;)
AND he’ll absolutely hate being inactive :(

Okiegal Says:

Hawkeye….the injury police….cute!! Totally see where you’re going with that comment…..Ben did too!! I was thinking the exact same thing after reading the article. Want to wish Andy well.

the DA Says:

Yes, on the other hand we’ll get some awesome Murray tweets in the coming months. Maybe he’ll make an appearance at the WTF as a spectator. He just has to receive the ovation they’ll be waiting to give him..while it’s relatively fresh.

xmike Says:

as someone who had (i suppose) a similar back operation in 2011 (herniated disc) that went horribly wrong and who still today cant walk properly, or do any sport other than swimming, i really wish him the best of luck both with operation, but also with the butcher…pardon me…the neurocirurgion that will be doing the procedure

and post op in my case (i was 38 at the time) was a excruciating painfull six months until i was able to start fisio and swimming

any one else had similar experiences, or was i simply unlucky?

Jimmy Says:

Dwight Howard had “minor back surgery” and after one year still was not 100%.

Jimmy Says:

Someone did tell me that the procedure where they inject blood or something had a much quicker recovery period.

the DA Says:

Well perhaps the (surprising) results of this survey in the NYT will make Andy feel slightly better:

“And the Winner of the Big Four Popularity Contest Is … Murray?”

The survey was done only in the US but still, to rank 1,043 spots higher than Federer in appeal is astounding and shows how far he has come.

the DA Says:

@ Jimmy – I’ve read that the method which will be used is a laparoscopy where a fiber-optic instrument is inserted through the abdominal wall to do the surgical procedure. It’s less invasive and allows for quicker recoveries.

skeezer Says:

the DA,

That was a fun read.
“Roger Federer, not surprisingly, leads in overall DBI score”
But was surprised at ‘But in the seven other attribute categories that make up a celebrity’s score — appeal, aspiration, breakthrough, endorsement, influence, trend setter and trust — Murray leads the way among the Big Four. ”
Murray deserves the props, he has a a great year, and its nice to see the fans respond to his great character!

Kimberly Says:

I know a lot of people in their late 30s who have had knee surgery back on the court in 6 weeks.

Patson Says:

I wish Andy a successful surgery. Let’s hope his recovery is speedy and he returns to the tour with a bang.

Brando Says:

@the DA:

Not surprised at that at all. Andy has a great appeal and I always felt after Fedal he has the potential to be the biggest name worldwide.

The US poll is no surprise: Andy seems the most natural at the USO in terms of how his personality gels so well with the crowd.

Loud, brash, roller coaster of a emotional journey that can be- yes- at times a foul one LOL!

Andy seems to be taking it all well on his twitter:

Thanks so much for all the nice messages today… Having operation on monday.. Will let everyone know how it goes.. Ill be “back” stronger

the DA Says:

@ skeezer – That was nice. I agree he deserves the props after being the underdog so often – that’s probably why he scored so well with the public. I’ve always thought his character was more appreciated by Americans than his countrymen (well, south of the border).

@ Brando – I saw that tweet. Good to see his humor is still there. That’s why I said the tweets in the coming weeks/months should be fun.

One last point, journalists who jumped the gun saying his season was over have backtracked and said only the Asian swing is out.


Ben Pronin Says:

I think he’ll be ok. I’m not sure Andy has the same problems Dwight did.

Brando Says:

‘’ve always thought his character was more appreciated by Americans than his countrymen (well, south of the border).’:

^^^^ That’s called hitting the nail on it’s head!

So true regarding Muzza!

Humble Rafa Says:

Humble won the US Open
Humble won 3.6 million dollars.
Humble double bageled a guy who beat some Swiss player on a surface made for cows.

Still Humble is not in the funk. What do I need to do? Have triplets to qualify.

Jo Says:

I’ve had back injury many times and the most severe & painful is that of 3 yrs ago. Was in pain and could not move well in 1 month. It was gone in 5 weeks. And I’m back now in tennis every week. I’m 46. Time heals.

Michael Says:

Back problems have proved fatal to many players in the past as well as present. It would be a shame if Andy’s career is cut short in such a crude fashion. I hope he doesn’t follow the way of supreme players like Haas, Hewitt etc. whose careers were spoiled by the chronic back problem. Let us hope it is a quick recovery for Andy and he comes blazing with all guns in Calendar year 2014. Now, with the rest of 2013 tour in jeopardy, Andy might even skip the World Tour Finals which may ironically open the door for Roger to qualify. It would be insulting for Roger to qualify in his fashion. But that is the way it is today when Roger is confined to the margins. Alas all good things come to an end and Roger had it too good for long.

Michael Says:

It is a pity that Andy may have to miss the rest of 2013 season due to a back surgery. Andy and his Team must be pretty careful because chronic back problems have proved to be the achilees heel for many players in the past. Even Roger of late has lost his movement due to this problem and he is not the same player as he was in his hey days. I hope Andy recovers well and comes with all guns blazing in 2014. Let us wish him a very speedy recovery.

Margot Says:

Lol the DA, where exactly be this “North” of which you speak? ;)
Andy can’t possibly be …um…..back.. before January. Am afraid I am of the “disc surgery is always dicey” and “keep those medics away from me” persuasion…..:(

Okiegal Says:

Guess Andy’s back is much worse than I thought it was. That is the reason for his inconsistent play. Wish him well for speedy recovery. I think he needs to take a few months off…..that is truly the only way to get healthy……stop doing what aggravates the problem.

Hope the surgery gets you back to normal soon…but don’t rush it!!

Okiegal Says:

@Margot 10:03

My hubby has back problems and he is also of the same persuasion as you……says he will never go under the knife. We have several friends who have had back surgery….not one has worked….in worse pain than ever. But all of this aside…I am sure Andy will have the best surgeon money can buy. Best wishes for him……after Rafa he is next on m list.

Okiegal Says:


my list

One final thought… sorry for Andy’s fans, I know they are sad for their fav. Hope it works for him!!!

SG1 Says:

This definitely blows and does provide some explanation of his performance at the USO. Andy seems to be one of the genuinely good guys on tour and he’s made huge strides over the past 18 months. Here’s hoping he comes back quickly and with the fire in his eyes. There’s no big 4 with Andy out of the mix.

Nativenewyorker Says:


A disc injury doesn’t have to mean something terrible. If there is a bulging disc, then they can go in and remove it and alleviate the problem. Back surgery today is much less invasive.

If Andy was just a regular person, then maybe it would not have to be done. But he is a professional tennis player and this condition is interfering with his ability to play his best. They seem to have tried more conservative methods when Andy skipped the French Open.

I firmly believe that the surgery will be successful and Andy will come back for 2014 healthy and better than ever.

My thoughts are with you and all of Andy’s fans during this difficult time.

Steve 27 Says:

Good luck to the recovery Andy

tennismonger Says:

Maybe Fed should get in touch w/Murray’s Dr. – this pull-the-plug-on-the-rest-of-the-season-and-come-baCK-strong thing could be the new hot trend –

Of course it’s not for the faint of hear…

tennismonger Says:

…faint of heart, that is…

Margot Says:

Cheers NNY :)

Margot Says:

….And Okiegal :)
…in fact to everyone whose offered sympathy!

Okiegal Says:

@Margot……..Yes Maaam! We can all have our differences in who our Favs are but…..they are all giving us great entertainment and personally for me when someone is injured and has to be out of the game, ruins it for me. Love to see the top guys going to battle. I sincerely hope Andy does what is best for him. I think taking some time off is in his favor. It is so hard on the fans. I was crushed when Rafa had to take time off to heal……..but I lived through it. Looking forward to see what the Aussie Open has in store for us.

Vamos Rafa and get well Andy!!!

Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Shame about Andy,and i hope hes fully fit for the AO next year,im not entirely surprised as it seemed after Wimbledon that things were not right,the smart thing to do was call time on the season to get his back sorted out,sometimes you have to make sacrifices for the sake of your health.

Margot Says:

Word on the net is that Andy has had the op and it was successful. However, he is spending two days in hospital so wasn’t that simple an op.
Judy has tweeted she’s going to the cinema- probably her way of saying, “Don’t worry!”
But I am anyway! Won’t be happy till we hear from Andy himself.

Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Margot thanks for the info regarding our Andy,im sure that he will be fine after plenty of r and r,but i think it will ease all of our minds when we hear from the man himself.

Perfect fan Says:

“Godspeed Andy”…….get-well-soon :)

the DA Says:

Andy finally tweeted from his hospital bed (including a pic):

and then with his typical humor:

“First thing I said when I came round was “did I win?”

Thankfully it seems to gone well.

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