World No. 265 Yosuke Watanuki admitted he was very nervous during his practice with three-time Grand Slam champion. At Melbourne Par, Watanuki got a chance to practice with Murray, who is "the player he respects the most."
Watanuki was hoping to make the Australian Open main draw but he failed after losing to Radu Albot in the qualifying second round. "I had Andy Murray practice! On the court next door Dimitrov & Kyrgios came & there were lots of spectators & I was really nervous," Watanuki said in an Instagram post.
"I was really happy to practice with the player I respect most as a tennis player! "I will do my best to win the match someday."
Yosuke Watanuki IG
I had Andy Murray practice! On the court next door Dimitrov & Kyrgios came & there were lots of spectators & I was really nervous 😹
I was really happy to practice with the player I respect most as a tennis player!
Murray enjoyed a good week in Sydney
Murray, who received a wildcard into Sydney, fell just short of winning his first ATP title since 2019.
In the Sydney final, Murray suffered a 6-3 6-3 loss to Aslan Karatsev. "I'd like to congratulate Aslan on a fantastic week. I know he also arrived here late in Australia, he was recovering from COVID, so even more impressive to come back straight away and play at that level.
Good job and all the best for the Aussie Open," Murray said after receiving the runner-up trophy, per the ATP website. "I'd like to thank my team who are here for all of their help this week. It's my first time back in the finals for three years, it's been a long road to get back here but I couldn't have done it without all of your help so thank you.
".. I'd also like to say thank you to everyone who put the event on, this is my first time in Sydney, you did a fantastic job. It's not easy times just now to run events but I really enjoyed it so thanks so much to everyone for putting this event on."