Andy Murray: A Warrior’s Journey to Wimbledon

Andy Murray: A Warrior’s Journey to Wimbledon

Mail Sport columnist – and former British No1 – John Lloyd was courtside as Andy Murray appeared in public for the first time since surgery to remove a cyst from his spine…

Watching Andy Murray during his practice session and assessing his chances of being fit was almost like being at one of his matches — it was cagey, nip and tuck and you didn’t know which way it was going to go.

From what he said afterwards it sounds like he is not going to play singles. Obviously he has 48 hours, but if he is still not confident now with his movement, it is unlikely that he will play singles.

But watching him practise on Saturday, there was just something about his attitude.

He was very smiley and jokey with his team and it makes me think — how would he be that happy if his body wasn’t in a position to play?

Andy Murray underwent spinal surgery just last week but is determined to play at Wimbledon

The 37-year-old is currently a doubtful entrant in the singles and the doubles next week

The 37-year-old is currently a doubtful entrant in the singles and the doubles next week

But the two-time SW19 champion looked in high spirits at the practice courts on Saturday

But the two-time SW19 champion looked in high spirits at the practice courts on Saturday

If it were me, if I had been putting in all this work and wasn’t fit, I wouldn’t be laughing, joking and smiling.

He did not look like a person who was going to walk away from Wimbledon without playing in something, even if it’s just doubles. But it’s tough to figure him out.

In terms of how he looked physically, he didn’t go crazy in intensity but he did put in some decent movements.

At the end of the practice, they were doing an exercise where he would play a backhand and then had to run across the court, almost in a semi-slide, to the forehand side and he looked fine.

This was not just a little hit and giggle. He wasn’t going full out on his serve, but I thought there was a decent snap on it.

He is so desperate to play at Wimbledon one more time. Obviously he could do that with the doubles, but he would love to get out there in the singles.

On the other hand he is such a warrior, such a winner, that he doesn’t want to go out there and not have any shot at all.

The draw helps — the fact he was drawn to play against Tomas Machac on Tuesday, rather than on Monday, gives him an extra day to get ready.

No one in his team can make that decision — they can advise him, but in the end it comes down to him. He’s the boss, it’s his life and his career.

If I was a betting man I would say he was going to play but its tough to read it. He deserves a good send-off.

Murray has a great affinity with the crowd. What he has done here has been amazing. I’m sure he is doing absolutely everything to go out there one more time, even if it is only one match.

Murray's serve still has snap, and he has just as much tireless fight in his game as he ever did

Murray’s serve still has snap, and he has just as much tireless fight in his game as he ever did 

The veteran's chance of making it to the court versus Tomas Machac is aided by Tuesday start

The veteran’s chance of making it to the court versus Tomas Machac is aided by Tuesday start

Novak Djokovic - who is also coming back from surgery - seems incredibly bullish about hopes

Novak Djokovic – who is also coming back from surgery – seems incredibly bullish about hopes

How we will miss him. You don’t get a player like him very often. He is perhaps the greatest sports person this country has ever had.

Novak Djokovic, meanwhile, seemed much more bullish about his chances after his own surgery.

To have a meniscus tear, have surgery and then three weeks later be ready to play five sets against the best players in the world, that is amazing. He will believe he can get all the way through, because he said he would only play if he felt he could win the tournament. He has actually got a very kind draw, starting with a qualifier and then either a qualifier or a wildcard.

He also has a Tuesday start as well, so he’s got an extra day. He absolutely thinks that he can get through this first week and then will be ready to go. It’s remarkable as I didn’t think there was much chance of him playing.

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