Mur­ray will re­turn for Aus­tralian Open claims tour­na­ment direc­tor

Tehran Times - - WORLD SPORTS -

Andy Mur­ray will take his place in the draw for the Aus­tralian Open next Jan­uary, ac­cord­ing to the tour­na­ment direc­tor.

The five-time run­ner-up in Mel­bourne has been out in­jured since he ex­ited Wim­ble­don with a hip in­jury in July hav­ing made the de­ci­sion to take the re­main­der of the sea­son off for his re­cov­ery.

The Bri­tish num­ber one’s fu­ture in the sport has even been brought into ques­tion as a re­sult of the in­jury with fans fear­ing that he may strug­gle to re­cap­ture his form and fit­ness.

But the Aus­tralian Open’s tour­na­ment direc­tor Craig Ti­ley is adamant that Mur­ray, along with No­vak Djokovic and Kei Nishikori who have also strug­gled through per­sis­tent in­juries, will be fit and fir­ing come Jan­uary for the first Grand Slam of the sea­son.

“I’m very happy to con­firm that all the top play­ers will be back in Mel­bourne in Jan­uary,” Ti­ley said at the tour­na­ment’s launch, streamed on Twit­ter.

“On the men’s side, there has been a lot of con­cern and con­jec­ture around Andy Mur­ray, No­vak Djokovic, Kei Nishikori.

“I can tell you that in talk­ing to Andy, he has been train­ing and he is pre­par­ing for hav­ing a great year in 2018.

“As com­pet­i­tive as Andy is, we know he’s back and he’ll want to im­prove his cur­rent rank­ing of num­ber three in the world and get­ting back to num­ber one.”

Mean­while, Ser­ena Wil­liams also ap­pears set to re­turn to Mel­bourne Park to de­fend the ti­tle she won in Mel­bourne while eight weeks preg­nant.

Ti­ley de­scribed Ser­ena as hav­ing a “spe­cial re­la­tion­ship” with the Aus­tralian Open, and very much ex­pects the 35-year-old to be ready to go come Jan­uary.

“Ser­ena, the com­peti­tor that she is, she wants to win more than the 23 Grand Slam ti­tles that she has,” he said.

Ti­ley’s announcement comes a month after Ser­ena’s coach, Pa­trick Mouratoglou, ex­clu­sively told Eurosport at the US Open that she was tar­get­ing her re­turn for be­ing in time for Mel­bourne.

Ad­di­tion­ally, Ti­ley con­firmed the prize money for next year’s tour­na­ment will rise by 10 per cent to 55 mil­lion Aus­tralian dol­lars (£32.5 mil­lion), with the men and women’s cham­pi­ons earn­ing 4 mil­lion Aus­tralian dol­lars (£2.3 mil­lion).

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Iran

© PressReader. All rights reserved.