Murray calm ahead of final ascent bid
ANDY MURRAY insisted yesterday he felt no additional pressure ahead of his quest to wrest away the world’s top ranking from long-time incumbent Novak Djokovic at this week’s Paris Masters.
Murray ( caricature) can supplant Djokovic at the summit by claiming a first title in the French capital if the Serb fails to reach the final of an event he has dominated in recent times.
The Briton has won three successive tournaments – Beijing, Shanghai and Vienna – to close in on Djokovic and would become the oldest new No. 1 since Australia’s John Newcombe in 1974.
But the 29-year-old said his approach would remain the same and vowed to block out the hysteria surrounding his potential ascent to the top.
“It’s not in my control. I can obviously try and win my matches, but even if I win all of my matches this week, I still might not get there,” said Murray.
“So it’s in Novak’s hands. He’s ahead obviously just now, so if he wins his matches and gets to the latter stages of the last two tournaments, then he’ll most likely keep the No. 1 spot.
“I wanted to finish this year as strong as possible, and I think there is a lot stronger chance of doing it in the early part of next year, which is what I targeted rather than this week.”
Murray, who received a firstround bye, will begin his Paris campaign against former world No. 7 Fernando Verdasco, after the Spaniard progressed following the retirement of Dutchman Robin Haase. – AFP