Andy Murray maps out calendar for rest of season as he makes another Davis Cup U-turn

Andy Murray and Ash Barty pay tribute to each other

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Andy Murray has changed his mind on playing the Davis Cup yet again, as he appeared to rule himself out of the team competition. Following his Indian Wells exit earlier this month, the former world No 1 said he was not planning to join the squad but later made a u-turn as he said he could be “convinced to play”, with one spot left on the team. After losing to Carlos Alcaraz in Vienna, Murray doubled down on his decision not to play the event.

Murray was part of the Davis Cup-winning squad back in 2015, as he helped lead Britain to a first victory in the team competition in 79 years.

However, he recently ruled himself out of the 2021 Finals, set to take place across Austria, Spain and Italy at the end of this month.

Speaking after his loss to world No 4 Alexander Zverev in Indian Wells two weeks ago, the current world No 156 said he wasn’t planning to play, and didn’t think he “deserved” to be part of the squad when other British players, including the likes of Cameron Norrie, Dan Evans and Joe Salisbury, had seen success on the singles and doubles courts this year.

“Right now, I’m not planning on playing the Davis Cup and with the late finish to it, and early departure to Australia, with my schedule between now and the end of the year, I am going to have to rest and take a break and give my body a chance to breathe,” Murray, 34, added.

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He then appeared to change his mind, as team captain Leon Smith announced four players for his five-man squad, leaving a spot open for the three-time Grand Slam champion, who admitted he could be “convinced” to play.

Just days ago, Murray told The Times: “Never say never, maybe I could be convinced to play.

“When I was getting asked about it, I had six weeks in a row planned. I am not young, I need to rest as well.”

The Brit did note that the Davis Cup had always been “physically very demanding” on his body in the past, something he will be looking to avoid as he continues his comeback from hip resurfacing surgery he underwent in 2019.

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Now, it appears Murray has made yet another u-turn as he once again ruled himself out of competing in Innsbruck later this month.

After losing to Carlos Alcaraz in the second round of the Erste Bank Open on Wednesday night (October 27), just weeks after beating the Spanish teenager in Indian Wells, Murray outlined his schedule for the rest of the season, once again confirming the Davis Cup wasn’t part of his plans.

“I’m definitely playing in Stockholm,” the former world No 1 said, confirming his participation in the ATP 250 event starting on November 7.

“I think Paris was looking positive, but not 100 percent sure yet, so we’ll wait to see on that.

“Davis Cup is not something I’m planning on.”

The world No 156, who now has four children with wife Kim Sears, said he wanted to have a proper off-season, giving him enough time to spend with his family, as well as improving his game on the practice court.

Looking to next season, Murray could arrive at the Australian Open in January as the only member of the big four competing.

Novak Djokovic remains a doubt for the season-opening Grand Slam as the Victoria Premier is standing firm on his stance to ban players unless they prove they are double vaccinated, while Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are still recovering from their respective ongoing injuries.
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