Sunday, March 13, 2022 - Andy Murray plays against Alexander Bublik in the second round of the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indian Wells, California. (Michael Cummo/BNP Paribas Open)
THE MODERATOR: All right. Questions?
Q. You obviously have been on tour for a long time. You’ve spoke out about many issues. These days abuse has been an important issue. I just wanted to know what your thoughts were about what occurred with Naomi Osaka last night?
ANDY MURRAY: Did you say abuse?
Q. Yes, I said abuse.
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I mean, it’s a difficult one. I mean, I’ve often thought like watching certain sports, I wouldn’t say I’ve often seen it loads in tennis. I know it’s happened. But I don’t think it’s that common in tennis.
But like if I watch like a football or a soccer match and a player’s going to take throw-in or a corner kick and the crowd are just hurling insults at those individuals, I always think like, you know, how’s that allowed? Like, you can’t do that. You know, if you’re doing that to someone when you’re walking down the street or in any other sort of work environment, you know, that’s obviously not tolerated.
I’ve obviously played in certain atmospheres as well myself in tennis, like Davis Cup atmospheres, away from home, especially where the atmosphere’s intense, and sometimes things are said, you know, and it’s not that comfortable.
And, yeah, obviously the people that come to watch, obviously you want them to be there and supporting the players and obviously not making it more difficult for them. I don’t know, but there’s also, it’s also something that’s always just kind of been part of sports as well.
You know, if I you go and watch a basketball match, for example, and a player’s taking free throws, you know, I would say like almost every basketball match I’ve been to one of the players has been heckled by the crowd as well, and whilst it is wrong for those individuals to be doing it, you know, the athletes obviously, I guess, have to kind of be used to that as well or be able to deal with that too, even though it’s not pleasant.
So, obviously I feel for Naomi, that obviously it upset her a lot and, you know, but yeah, it’s always been something that’s been part of sport, I guess, as well. So, you know, you have to, I guess, be prepared for that in some ways and be able to tolerate it because it does happen regularly across all sports.
Q. When you look at these sort of results and you start to rekindle the association with Ivan, what’s going to be the most important thing for you when you restart working with him? What will you want to achieve out of the association?
ANDY MURRAY: I think like if I look at a match like today, I had all of the opportunities really in the first set. Obviously a tiebreak. Both of us had some chances there, but in the first set I certainly created more of the opportunities and I didn’t take them.
He obviously came up with some good serves at times, but I certainly had my chances and, you know, against players that play that style of tennis and have obviously big serves and not easy to break, you need to, when you get those chances, you know, be ruthless and I just didn’t quite play well enough in those moments today and that’s the thing that obviously I want to turn around.
Obviously, some of that can be down to confidence and some of it also down to the way that you’re also playing as well, and because maybe I’ve not felt like I’m playing my best in those moments, maybe not making always the right decisions or sometimes holding back a bit too much or sometimes going for a little bit too much and, yeah, that’s the thing that obviously needs to change. I just didn’t take my opportunities today and I feel that was an opportunity missed.
Q. After all you’ve been through and being where you are, is a match just as hard now compared to before you went through all the injuries and the surgeries and whatnot?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I mean, obviously, I would say like losing in finals and stuff is maybe when you feel like you’ve had the opportunity to win something and lost maybe are always a little bit tougher.
But, yeah, like a match like today, I feel like I definitely had enough in me to win that match and I think had I got that first set or taken some of my opportunities at the very beginning of that match, it pans out a bit differently. That’s the thing that’s frustrating for me.
Kind of like when we played in Rotterdam, like won a tight first set, you know, match, the match flipped quickly after that in my favor and, yeah, I’m just frustrated, frustrated with that. But I was happy with my attitude in the matches that I played here. I thought that was positive. I tried to do the right things at times, just was not executing them well, and that’s where, and I’ve said I really need to also spend some time on the practice court to change those things.
Obviously winning matches and competing is important but there’s a few things that have been an issue for a period of time and I need a bit of time on the practice court to try and change that.
Q. I see that the clay court season is upcoming pretty soon. You started to work with Ivan for the season to come. Also Rafa is having a great year and he’s always been very successful on clay, and Novak as well. So three of the top four, the big four guys are going to be there. So what are your thoughts for the upcoming clay season?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, so I mean, I’m not planning on playing the clay court season; however, as it stands today I would have to put Rafa as being the favorite to potentially win the French Open again. Novak’s obviously had very little competitive tennis for a period, and Rafa’s obviously started the year extremely well and, yeah, he’s maybe in a position that, you know, I think he even said was not expecting himself to be in, even a few months ago. So he probably feels like quite relaxed and maybe a little bit less pressure than was on him a couple of, you know, the last couple of French Opens, for example.
So, but I wouldn’t count Novak out, for sure, but it’s not going to be easy because he’s obviously missed quite a lot of tennis.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports