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Andy's epic year/off season discussion!

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ProdigyEng
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Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « on: November 11, 2012, 11:35 PM »
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Well I guess considering it's off season for Andy, I would make this thread so we could look back over his year, and discuss anything he does in the off season.

IMO it's been a GREAT year for Andy and I really didn't expect him to do so well.
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boogers
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #1 on: November 11, 2012, 11:39 PM »
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A breakthrough year.

Next year he needs to attack the #1 position, which will require a great deal more consistency than we've seen in recent times. No reason why he shouldn't get close at least.
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ProdigyEng
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #2 on: November 11, 2012, 11:42 PM »
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Nice to see you being positive Phil. I agree with you on the consistency, but I feel it kinda dropped off at the US Open, not only with match stats but also victories.
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #3 on: November 11, 2012, 11:45 PM »
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I feel it kinda dropped off at the US Open, not only with match stats but also victories.

It did, but then that's not too surprising - a dip in form after achieving a career goal is understandable. That doesn't make any of the recent defeats any less frustrating though.

Actually, I'll expand on that. What's been surprising - and frustrating - is the way in which he's throw away match leads since the USO. A total slump in form similar to the spring US hardcourt swing this year would have been understandable, but the spurned match points and random collapses in form half way through a match have been surprising.
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Sabine
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #4 on: November 12, 2012, 09:25 AM »
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Thanks for this thread Prodigy. Just what we needed after the WTF semi-final loss - a reminder of how much he has achieved this year.
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althusser
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #5 on: November 12, 2012, 09:48 AM »
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Disappointing to end the year in pretty poor form against arch-enemy smugfed.

But, to put it in perspective, I think Muz will reflect on the year with perhaps more happiness than the other top players. And as fans, we have  had more euphoric moments this year than Nole, Fed or Nadal fans.

E.g. for Nole, he had that phenomenal AO win at the beginning of the year. But although he has come through the year as No 1 (and absolutely deservedly so) there must be a bit of a feeling of anti-climax having not won any more 'biggies' and not being the dominant force in quite the way of last year.

Fed got Wimbledon, and showed he is till up there challenging for GSs - but proving that you are still in the mix is not overwhelming success given the career he has had. He will never be feared in the way he was in the past again.

Muz became first Brit Wimbledon finalist in decades, and ended up winning wider support in the process. And who could have imagined that a month after the loss of the final he would get to 'replay' the event, this time for the Olympics with  a crowd much more representative of the UK as a whole, cheering him to the rafters as he demolished maybe the greatest ever grasscourt player to win his first big title! And look at the international support (or certainly American) as he achieved his career ambition in the US Open. Beating Nole over five sets in a hardcourt grand slam, in those conditions, is as tough an ask as you'll ever get in tennis, but he did it, heroically.

Lets remember how far he has come in just a few months. Before Wimbledon alot of top ex-players were writing off his chances e.g. Navratilova said the other three were just  too good for Muz to triumph. And probably many of us at that time would have reluctantly feared she was right.

Hopefully a somewhat underwhelming end-of-year will caution people against expecting TOO much next year. Personally I think he has been in a weird place mentally since the USO - not much time to digest what has happened in the year - playing well often enough but the focus is not right. In the past he has nearly always learned from his experiences during the year and come back stronger in the next one - I think he will need to again - its not like the standard of play is getting any easier at the top! But now he can always draw on the fact that he had done it when it really matters. Nole is rightly no1, but Muz has been the story of the last six months and if he can win the AO he'll stay the main story!!
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Tasmanian Devil
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #6 on: November 12, 2012, 04:46 PM »
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It'll be interesting to see what Lendl decides to work on in the off season.  This is still a work in progress and, with his batteries recharged, I think we'll see a good start to 2013.
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #7 on: November 12, 2012, 06:16 PM »
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Looking ahead to 2013, I'd like to see Ivan limit his golf tournaments to support Andy at Masters tournaments more often, as-well as Slams.
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xxdanixx
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #8 on: November 12, 2012, 06:27 PM »
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Looking ahead to 2013, I'd like to see Ivan limit his golf tournaments to support Andy at Masters tournaments more often, as-well as Slams.

To be fair though,at least during this first year,Andy didn't want Ivan there all the time.I read an interview with Ivan in which he said that Andy had been upfront from the start with him about the fact that one of the big problems he'd had with coaches in the past was spending too much time with them;having them around too often.Andy and Ivan deliberately worked out a plan which had Ivan there when Andy wanted him,but that would allow Ivan to play his golf and not have to be there all the time.

I've no idea whether they'll change the strategy to have Ivan around for more tournies next year,or if they'll stick with what they've got going on at the moment,but whichever way they end up going you can bet that it will have been very carefully thought about and decided on by all concerned-and no one more so than Andy himself.
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Ruthie
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #9 on: November 12, 2012, 07:16 PM »
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I think it's been an amazing year.  Of course not every tournament has been amazing.  But nothing can take away that gold medal, snatched out of the greedy clutches of a smugfed whose fans had assumed the match was just a formality, or the USO title in which Andy proved his mental and physical fortitude in that final set.  Never again will we have to speculate as to when ANdy would win his 1st GS title or whether he would become the best player never to do so.  Against that everything else pales into insignificance in comparison and I'm really pleased that Andy clearly sees it like that on the basis of the press conference after his disappointing exit from WTF.
Here's to 2013 Mr Magic Murray  yay
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #10 on: November 12, 2012, 08:14 PM »
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He should be very proud of what he has achieved this year. It's definitely been Andy's year and it was wonderful to see him finally achieve the full potential we all saw in him as a 17 or 18 year old. I honestly can't wait to see what happens next year because I think it's going to be a VERY exciting one!

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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #11 on: November 13, 2012, 12:22 AM »
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It's been a fabulous year, and I hope Andy now gets the chance to properly relax and enjoy it.  Part of me would like him to do an in depth type interview for one of the Sunday supplements reflecting on his year - the sort that most of the higher profile gold medallists were doing in the aftermath of the Oympics -  but only if he doesn't find it too stressful!  I just feel he (we) missed out a bit on all of that by jetting off to Canada the day after his win.

Mainly I hope he finds a way to get the balance right between resting, spending time with family & friends, and preparing for next year.  In his BBC blog Andy was clear that he hated the thought of not doing enough so he wasn't quite fit enough for the Aus Open.

To be fair though,at least during this first year,Andy didn't want Ivan there all the time.I read an interview with Ivan in which he said that Andy had been upfront from the start with him about the fact that one of the big problems he'd had with coaches in the past was spending too much time with them;having them around too often.Andy and Ivan deliberately worked out a plan which had Ivan there when Andy wanted him,but that would allow Ivan to play his golf and not have to be there all the time.
It seems to have worked well for them both.  Ivan has enjoyed being back in the heart of the tennis world, but he's still got time for his own life, his family, golf and even playing some of his own tennis tournaments too!

I can't imagine Ivan enjoying working with a player who is too needy, and one of the things I recall him saying is that he knows there's no benefit to him trying to micro-manage how Andy plays.  For a start, he has respect for Andy's own decision making skills, and if anything, Andy needs to trust his own instincts more and not over-think shots.  Clearly, they discuss tactics, and apparently that's one of the things they spent time talking about when they were still deciding if they'd work together.

I wouldn't be surprised if we saw a bit more of Ivan next year, as it does look like he's got a lot out of working with Andy and the team, and they've obviously worked out that they get along well beyond initial politeness.  Then again, I can't see Ivan wanting to give up too much golf, or to turn up at tournaments just for the reflected glory - he doesn't need it.

I'd love to know what else they plan to work on in the off-season.  This year work has gone into Andy's forehand, but a couple of people said that they noticed he was losing power in it for the third set against Djokovic last week, so perhaps he'll be putting work into that shot so he can sustain it more in competition.
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xxdanixx
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #12 on: November 13, 2012, 09:58 AM »
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I agree completely with your post Sparkle!
However,Andy doesn't really seem to like doing-well,any media really,but especially the long,in-depth stuff,so we could be waiting a while for that one!I mean maybe I'm wrong,he might actually want to cap off his biggest year with an in-depth interview,and sort of have a fresh start for next year-but with his holiday coming up,that he's so obviously looking forward to,and then the training block,I just don't know how all of that would work out.Guess we'll see!

I too hope he has some really refreshing,enjoyable time off with Kim,friends,etc.He has MORE than earned it.I reckon he'll manage to balance it all ok.The good thing is that I reckon he seems to be looking at it in a determined way-he is,being Andy,determined to leave no stone unturned in terms of preparation for next season,but he's also giving himself a holiday and spending christmas at home for the first time in 4 years.That seems like a pretty balanced way to do things to me,and I'm glad for him that he's giving himself that time.

I also think what you say about Ivan is spot-on-he wouldn't want to work with somebody who needed his hand held all the time.I do think that now that they know they all get along really well,and genuinely get a lot out of working with each other,we may see him with the team more.In fact,the upcoming training may help to decide that for them,seeing how they all get along there.I doubt he'll give up all his golf though.He'll still want his own life,and I can't see Andy disagreeing.

As to what they work on for next year,well,I'm eager to see!I was just reading a piece with Andy in which he said this:

''Although it has been a breakthrough season with victories in the US Open and the Olympics, Murray has ended it with a 56-16 record and, in terms of that bald statistic, it is only his fourth best since turning professional. Hence his determination that 2013 sees better performances through the whole year. ‘Consistency, I think, is the next thing,’ he said. ‘The first tournament of the year through till the last one.

‘My clay-court game needs to get better. I need to make some changes to the way I prepare for that part of the season. There have just been a few too many times, especially at the beginning of the year, where my intensity and focus were not where they needed to be.
‘I think because I had never won a Slam, every time I lost in one I was almost straight away looking to the next one and not focusing on everything that was going on in between.’'

So it sounds like he's determined to chase the rankings,and improve on the consistency,which we already knew,but also to find new ways to work on improving for clay-court season.We probably won't find out too much more though,to be honest,with how close to the vest Ivan plays it!I don't know if you saw the interview with him before the Federer match,and he was asked did he have any tips or whatever,and he laughed,and said something like "I stick with my weapons.Find a way to win the last point".

I mean,of course he wasn't going to give the journalist anything big to go in,but it sort of says it all,in a way!
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Jayel
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #13 on: November 13, 2012, 09:55 PM »
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Great year for Andy and for all (well nearly all, BN and B could be exceptions) of his fans and supporters at MW this was a year to cherish. With sucess his self belief has moved on and his perfectionist attitude to tennis does not seem to produce so many negatives as it did when one bad shot could blow all that was good.. The two above him in the rankings have an attitude that defeat is not an option until the last point is lost, when Andy gets there with a similar belief I believe there will be no one above him in the rankings. More power to your forehand Andy.
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xxdanixx
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Re: Andy's epic year/off season discussion! « Reply #14 on: November 13, 2012, 10:30 PM »
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The two above him in the rankings have an attitude that defeat is not an option until the last point is lost, when Andy gets there with a similar belief I believe there will be no one above him in the rankings.
Jayel,I think that's a very good point you make there.

What struck me about the WTF was that in interviews,before the semi-final I think,Andy was talking like he was prepared for the fact that he might lose.But then I contrasted that with what appeared to me to be an attitude of I-Won't-lose at the Olympics.I'm not saying Andy thought that gold medal was automatically his,I just remember watching him and thinking like it seemed like he'd made up his mind that he was going to win his way to that podium,regardless of who he had to beat along the way.He just seemed so mentally strong in his attitude.

It was a bit the same at the USO.Andy himself said it-he didn't always play his best tennis,but he played smart tennis,and stayed very mentally strong.I mean,he played some phenomenal tennis,and it was a pleasure to see.But more than that,it was like he had just found a way not to lose.

Now,I don't say Andy suddenly has to go around like Smugfed,basically thinking most matches are a formality,and that he's won before a ball is struck.God no-his humility is one of the many things I sincerely admire about him as a person.And yeah,a person has to be realistic-in sport there's always a chance you can lose.But if he could keep that mental strength,that way to not lose,going all the time-and I really think he's almost there with that,and he's been open about the fact that he's always looking for new ways to help him do that-well,that combined with his ever-impoving tennis abilities,means I think it's going to be very exciting future for Andy and his fans!
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