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Andy Murray and the sunblock factor

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Originally published on: 02/03/12 10:59

Andy Murray spent much of December in Miami, almost all of January in Australia and most of February in Miami or Dubai. So how is it that the 24-year-old Scot’s skin colour is still like that of a man who has been wintering in Dunblane?
 
Murray revealed his secret at this week’s Dubai Duty Free Championships, where his first three matches were all played early in the afternoon during the hottest period of the day. Asked about the sunblock he used, Murray said: “I put on factor 30. The key is to put it on 20, 30 minutes before you go out there. Supposedly it takes a little while for it to sink in. Sometimes I get burnt on my nose because after points I always wipe the sweat off my face, but now that I’m wearing a hat in the heat, that’s been all right.”
 
The top two seeds, Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer, did not play any of their first three matches in the heat of the day and will leave the tournament never having had to do so. Today’s semi-finals (Djokovic against Murray and Federer against Juan Martin del Potro) start late in the afternoon and tomorrow’s final will be played in the evening.
 
Murray, however, has no complaints about the scheduling. “To be honest, I’m pretty used to playing during the day,” he said. “I can’t really remember when I haven’t, apart from when the Slam semis are in the night. I always play pretty much during the day in all the big events. I very rarely play night matches nowadays. I play a lot in the middle of the day, so I got used to it.”
 
Nevertheless, Murray will need to adapt to the slower pace of the balls later in the day. “The conditions change here significantly,” he said. “When the sun goes down, it gets much cooler and the balls are a lot slower.”

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