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MurraysWorld  >  Andy Talk  >  Why is Andy's break point conversion rate so poor?
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Why is Andy's break point conversion rate so poor?


 Interesting stats in freebie mag Sport, 17 June. 

'Andy Murray's stats for the season so far are telling, especially when compared with the men standing between the Scot and a first Grand Slam title...

First serve percentage 58%;      Nadal 67%, Djokovic 66%, Federer 63%

Second service points won 44%;      Nadal 57%, Djokovic 58%, Federer 57%

Avg double faults per match 2.4;      Nadal 1.5, Djokovic 1.6, Federer 1.3

Service games won 73%;      Nadal 84%, Djokovic 89%, Federer 88%

Return games won 41%;      Nadal 40%, Djokovic 41%, Federer 27%

Murray versus the big three: Murray 4 Nadal 11 (Grand Slams Murray 2 Nadal 3)

                                              Murray 3 Djokovic 6 (Grand Slams Murray 0 Djokovic 1)

                                              Murray 8 Federer 6 (Grand Slams Murray 0 Federer 2)'

Andy is right up there with return games won so he is obviously doing lots of things right when it comes to breaking serve.  Indeed it is a measure of his return skills that he is creating so many opportunities.  Mark Petchey once pointed out that Andy manages to get his racquet on impossible serves and sometimes, as a result, it appears that he only just gets the ball back over the net rather than doing much with it.  In reality he denies his opponent what would otherwise be 'cheap' points and gives himself many 'outside' chances of winning points against serve.

Therefore Andy is notching up lots of break points which he very often is not favourite to convert.  You only have to look at the stats above to see how the top guns protect their service, and Andy rarely gets gifted free or sometimes even playable points at key moments.  How many of us pray for a double fault or an error from his opponents as most of them when playing Andy seem to produce lights-out ridiculous levels of play, for example in the Queen's final Tsonga was hitting some of his serves at 143mph.

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Murray is the best returner around. The stats since the start of his career back that up.
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Murray's return is not the problem, it is often the pressure put on his serve which has been crucial against Nole and Nadal of late.  Yes he needs to win more of these break points, or even just win more of them FIRST...but it is his serve which needs to be strong.  He has always had a big serve, it is probably the best out of the top 4 when he has his percentage high.  The trouble has come when it has been around 50 and the best have been able to really pressurise the second serve.  The aussie open final was a classic example of that, Nole just killed Andy's second serve.

As the stats put up show Murray is right at the top of the game, he could easily be the NO 1.  Nole is the example of how things can turn around, as until this year he was doing little better against the top two than Andy was.  I want to see that gap closed with Fed over the summer and overtaken in the autumn.  Andy's aim should be to start next year knowing he is very close to overtaking them.  To do that he just needs to start winning slams.

It is just so hard to do!!!
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