Murray returns to action at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship

By for MurraysWorld.com on
Andy Murray has completed his pre-season preparation at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship, the annual exhibition event in Abu Dhabi. He played two matches, yesterday losing 7-5 6-3 to Jo Wilfried-Tsonga and today beating Stanislas Wawrinka 6-3 6-4.

The world number four last played in the Davis Cup tie against Croatia, where he helped to send Great Britain back into the World Group. He had back surgery shortly afterwards, which forced him to miss the rest of the 2013 season.

The first set against Tsonga was evenly contested, continuing on serve until 5-6. The Scot offered up a set point after a double fault, with the 28-year-old Frenchman winning the set with a pinpoint accurate lob.

Murray responded positively, breaking to start the second set. But Tsonga broke straight back and won the next three games to take a 4-1 lead. Continuing to serve very well, the Frenchman gave Murray few chances on return and wrapped the match up in 72 minutes.



In today's match against Wawrinka, Murray took the lead at 2-3, but was immediately broken back. But he struck again in the world number eight's next service game, breaking with a powerful crosscourt forehand and holding to take the set.

Murray had two chances to break at 2-2 in the second set, but the 28-year-old Swiss hung on after some unforced errors from the world number four. The 26-year-old Scot made his move at 15-40 in Wawrinka's next service game, with powerful groundstrokes drawing an error. The Swiss saved a matchpoint in his next service game, and the Wimbledon champion then served out a convincing 66 minute victory.

Although Murray showed understandable signs of rustiness in the two matches, the signs were encouraging as far as his movement and overall play were concerned. Asked about his back, he said:

"I feel pretty good, a lot better than I did a few months ago. I just need matches, I need to play matches like this and get used to these conditions again because the intensity's a lot higher than anything you can do in practice, so this has been perfect."

Murray will now travel to Doha, where he will begin his 2014 season at the Qatar Exxonmobil Open. He won the tournament when he last played there in 2009, also picking up the title in 2008.
add comment | 17 comments
Thanks for the reports Katie.  I missed the Tsonga match but watched the second set of the Wawrinka one and thought Andy looked pretty good on the whole, in fact much better than I had expected in the circumstances, and that win should help his confidence.  I'm just very happy to see him back on court again!
December 27, 2013, 11:17 AM
By Aileen

Thanks for the report Katie - fair and accurate as ever.   I was particularly pleased with Andy's net play - even yesterday when he was showing more signs of rust.  Like Aileen it's just good to see him back on court but even better that he appears to be playing free of pain.  I wonder if he's made his final decision about AO yet?  His interview yesterday seemed to imply he'd be playing there.  Unless something goes wrong next week I can't see why not now.
December 27, 2013, 12:18 PM
By Ruthie

Good report. I was unable to see this match, only saw the 1st 2 games, but thought Andy was hitting the ball well and moving freely, with no sign of his back problem. It must be so good to have no pain and going through all the treatment both before and after every match. He will go into Doha with renewed confidence.
December 27, 2013, 01:43 PM
By michelle

Thanks Katie was unable to watch the match but glad to know he is up and running.
December 27, 2013, 01:58 PM
By iamabritt

To play as well as he has against 2 top 10 players bodes well.  I reckon Andy will have a real shot at winning the AO now because he will be close to full fitness after playing in Doha. The doom-mongers will have to eat their words!!
December 27, 2013, 02:05 PM
By BigNose

To play as well as he has against 2 top 10 players bodes well.  I reckon Andy will have a real shot at winning the AO now because he will be close to full fitness after playing in Doha. The doom-mongers will have to eat their words!!

Yes boogers will eat his words
December 27, 2013, 02:09 PM
By angiebabez

Yes boogers will eat his words
Angie I don't think he has ever done that.
December 27, 2013, 02:15 PM
By iamabritt

No lol I wont hold my breath..
December 27, 2013, 02:25 PM
By angiebabez

Yes boogers will eat his words

More chances of North Korea giving up their nuclear weapons and suppressing their people than for that to happen LOL
December 27, 2013, 03:13 PM
By syc23

Do you mean 'not suppressing their people'?
December 27, 2013, 09:09 PM
By Alis

add comment | 17 comments