Three-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray feels sorry for those athletes who were preparing for the Tokyo Olympics for three or four years and then it got postponed last year. The Tokyo Olympics were scheduled to take place last year but they were pushed back for 2021 due to COVID-19.
"But tennis is a bit different from some of the ‘true’ Olympic sports,” Murray said of the Olympics, per The Gentlemans Journal. “Some athletes have been preparing for the event for four years.
For tennis, it sits beside the grand slams. I’ve seen interviews with athletes who have been prepping for two, three, four years — dedicating a large part of their lives to getting ready. And, having it pushed back and then cancelled last year, and then the uncertainty of not knowing if it will go ahead this year? It’s tough.
“It’s really hard, actually because of the amount of work and the sacrifice they’ve made. For me, it’s not the same. I love playing in the Olympics and I’ve been fortunate to compete in three of them.
But, for some other athletes, that is the focal point and highlight of their careers, so it has been really, really tough for them”.
Murray has two gold medals
Murray became the first tennis player ever to win back-to-back gold medals after winning the Olympics in London and Rio de Janeiro.
Meanwhile, taking a break from tennis during the lockdown rekindled a bit Murray's passion for the game. "Perhaps this hasn’t been the case in the UK,” he considers, “but I trained in Spain and tennis is a great social sport over there.
You can play it for life, and that’s what the UK needs to capitalise on much more; a club culture where you can go and hang out at the tennis club, play some tennis and have your lunch. “I know a lot of people who have got into tennis, and then played it into their later years."