Mur­ray’s with­drawal leaves Konta fly­ing flag

Yorkshire Post - Sports Monday - - SPORT - ELEANOR CROOKS

EMO­TIONAL Andy Mur­ray pulled out of the US Open af­ter re­luc­tantly con­clud­ing his on­go­ing hip prob­lem would not al­low him to do him­self jus­tice.

The world No 2 strug­gled through Wim­ble­don with the in­jury, los­ing in the quar­ter-fi­nals to Sam Quer­rey.

His prospects for Flush­ing Mead­ows had looked pos­i­tive when he trav­elled to New York last week­end, but, af­ter a week of prac­tice, Mur­ray de­cided the hip was sim­ply too painful.

The Scot, who looked close to tears, said: “I did pretty much every­thing I could to get my­self ready here, took a num­ber of weeks off af­ter Wim­ble­don, spoke to a lot of hip spe­cial­ists, tried rest­ing, re­hab­bing and was prac­tis­ing okay the last few days, but it’s too sore for me to win the tour­na­ment.

“Ul­ti­mately that’s what I was here to try and do, so un­fortu- nately I won’t be play­ing this year.”

Mur­ray headed to the press con­fer­ence room af­ter prac­tis­ing with French­man Lu­cas Pouille, and it was ap­par­ent on court that he was still limp­ing.

The 30-year-old must now de­cide what to do mov­ing for­ward and whether to fol­low No­vak Djokovic, Stan Wawrinka and Kei Nishikori, who have all brought their sea­sons to an early end be­cause of in­jury.

Mur­ray said he would make a de­ci­sion “in the next cou­ple of days”, with surgery an op­tion he may con­sider.

Annabel Croft rates Jo­hanna Konta as a “ma­jor con­tender” for the US Open ti­tle.

With Mur­ray out, Bri­tish hopes in New York pre­dom­i­nantly lie with the Bri­tish women’s No 1 and world No 7 Konta is one of a re­mark­able eight women who could end the tour­na­ment at the top of the rank­ings.

The 26-year-old has al­ready made two grand slam semi-fi­nals, han­dling the pres­sure of ex­pec­ta­tion at her home tour­na­ment at Wim­ble­don last month su­perbly be­fore los­ing to Venus Wil­liams in the last four.

Croft said: “She brings such a high in­ten­sity ev­ery time she’s on the court. She makes play­ers have to play at such a high level to beat her be­cause of that al­most ma­chine-like ap­pli­ca­tion to what she’s do­ing.”

ANDY MUR­RAY: Has with­drawn from the US Open due to an on­go­ing hip in­jury.

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