Mur­ray hop­ing to en­joy last fling

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TEN­NIS: There’s a prospect, might­ily painful for both player and his ador­ing fans, that to­day could be the last time Andy Mur­ray com­petes on a ten­nis court.

On Fri­day in Mel­bourne, the five-time Aus­tralian Open run­ner-up fought back the tears as he an­nounced his loom­ing re­tire­ment at some stage in 2019 ow­ing to a de­bil­i­tat­ing hip con­di­tion.

So ex­pect an almighty re­sponse from the Mel­bourne Park crowd when Mur­ray takes on 22nd seed Roberto Bautista Agut in the Open’s first round.

Just don’t ex­pect a per­for­mance wor­thy of Mur­ray’s (pic­tured) stature.

“I know I’ve got no chance of win­ning this tour­na­ment and most likely I’m go­ing to lose in the first round,” Mur­ray said.

“I’m not happy about that. It’s go­ing to be un­com­fort­able.

“If it is my last match, I want to try and en­joy it, en­joy the whole ex­pe­ri­ence which is maybe some­thing dur­ing my ca­reer that I’ve not done. I’ve al­ways been fo­cused on tac­tics and win­ning and find­ing a way.”

The 30-year-old Scot says he will assess his fu­ture in the sport af­ter the tour­na­ment, with a goal of reach­ing Wim­ble­don in July for a wor­thy swan­song.

Photo: Scott Barbour/Getty

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