Andy wants Murr
> Unfashionable Murray looking good for world No. 1
ANDY MURRAY (pix) has never been the most fashionable member of tennis’s ‘Big Four’, but he finally looks the part as he zeroes in on the world No. 1 spot.
The 29-year-old swept past Roberto Bautista to win his third Shanghai Masters title, lifting his sixth trophy in what has been his best season yet.
It could get better for Murray, who can overtake Novak Djokovic at the top of the rankings with wins in Vienna and Paris, provided the Serb doesn’t reach the Paris final.
It hasn’t done Murray any harm that Djokovic has suffered a sudden and perplexing dip in form, and that Roger Federer is sidelined by injury.
The one-time gawky kid still berates himself during matches but he is far more comfortable with the media, giving fulsome and intelligent answers to all questions.
He is also prepared to defend and mentor younger players such as the wayward Nick Kyrgios, whose latest on-court meltdown resulted in a fine in Shanghai.
Physically, too, Murray is at his peak, with supreme fitness and acceleration that can shift his now- hulking frame around the court at frightening speeds.
“Winning Wimbledon was really a big boost to my confidence after I had had quite a few tough losses in the Slams the last few years,” he said.
“That kind of gave me a lot more belief in myself that I could win the major competitions again. It helped motivate me.”
Obstacles remain and Murray is wary of a return to form by Djokovic, conservatively predicting that February or March represent his best chance of reaching No. 1.
“I will try and finish this year as strong as I can. And next year if the opportunity is there to reach No. 1, then I want to try and take it,” he said.
It has been some journey for Murray, who survived the 1996 Dunblane school massacre when he was eight and moved to Spain to further his tennis career when he was 15.
But if he keeps his current trajectory, it won’t be long before he becomes Britain’s first world No. 1 under the ATP’s computerised rankings, which were introduced in 1973. – AFP