Former world no. 1 and three-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray was almost done and dusted in January after that thrilling clash with Roberto Bautista Agut in Melbourne, with hip pain that couldn't go away. Eager to extend career and secure a few more years on the Tour, Andy underwent another surgery that fixed the problems and allowed him to start working again, making a return in June with the doubles crown at Queen's.
Not rushing anything, the Briton stayed on the doubles court for a couple of tournaments, making slow singles return in Cincinnati, Winston-Salem and Rafa Nadal OPen Challenger, shaping up his game and embracing full Asian swing that put him in the spotlight again.
Andy lost in the second round in Zhuhai before reaching the quarter-final in Beijing, playing better and better and delivering more good tennis in Shanghai where he wasted a massive opportunity to defeat Fabio Fognini. Happy with his progress and the current level, Andy will now travel back to Europe and compete in Antwerp, seeking more good wins and better ranking positions ahead of 2020 when he should fight for the ATP titles again.
"The last two weeks have been a huge improvement in comparison to my level from two months ago. I felt like I have been very competitive in the matches, playing some good tennis. Physically, the encounters are still tough for my body and I need to improve that ahead of the new season."
Murray said. "Before the operation in January, I had struggled a lot, not just playing tennis but walking and other normal things, it was very uncomfortable. Two months after surgery, I have been pretty much pain-free in my hip, so I spoke to my team, unsure if I wanted to come back and play because I was quite happy not being in pain.
I had a normal life and enjoyed it a lot. Once I started training again, I felt the hip was fine and that I could play again. I returned to the court with the doubles to see how that was going and it turned out to be a pretty positive experience, not perfect but quite good since my hip wasn't hurting after the matches.
I decided to keep progressing and enduring physical tests to see where I was strength-wise. Once I got to a certain level of strength, my team agreed that I could try singles and it's been good so far."