Victoria Azarenka admits she has a major respect for Andy Murray as she noted that the Briton's story is one of the most impressive and admirable ones in the game. After two hip surgeries, 35-year-old Murray defeated 2021 Wimbledon finalist Matteo Berrettini in the Australian Open first round.
Then, Murray edged out Thanasi Kokkinakis in a five-set match that lasted nearly six hours. Azarenka, who is 33, admits what Murray is doing is something impressive and admirable. "I mean, honestly, I take inspiration from anything really.
I really respect Andy and his grit. It's very impressive to see how hard he works for what he is. I also sometimes question why he [does] it. I'm not going to lie. I'm like, You've got everything. You have kids at home. Why are you still, like last year, going to Challengers? But it's his way of doing it.
We were training in the same place actually in the off-season, and I saw how hard he worked. It's definitely impressive. I think he's sticking to what he believes, even though different people are telling him different things.
That, for me, is admirable," Azarenka said, per tennis.com.
Azarenka having a promising Australian Open
Azarenka, a two-time Grand Slam champion, has been through to the Australian Open round-of-16 after beating world No 12 Madison Keys 1-6 6-2 6-1.
Since reaching the 2020 US Open final, Azarenka hasn't been through to a Grand Slam quarterfinal. Now, she is having a very promising Australian Open run and she is just a win away from making her first Grand Slam quarterfinal in two and a half years.
In her next match, Azarenka will be taking on 87th-ranked Zhu Lin, who upset sixth-seeded Maria Sakkari. Azarenka is entering the match as the big favorite but Zhu has beaten Sakkari and the Belarusian definitely cannot allow herself to take Zhu for granted.