Andy Murray - Miami Open 2024

Andy Murray postpones start to grass court season after ‘struggling’ with back injury

Andy Murray has elected to skip defending his title next week at the Surbiton Challenger, with the Brit’s withdrawal coming days after admitting he was ‘struggling’ with a back problem.

Murray spent nearly two months out of action until mid-May, after recovering from an ankle injury that he obtained at the Miami Open.

However, in his return for the clay court season, Murray was unable to find much form and won only one of his four singles matches.

This included an opening round defeat at Roland Garros, with Murray also deciding to play doubles with compatriot Dan Evans.

Murray and Evans also suffered a straight sets defeat in the first round on Friday, with the former revealing that he had been dealing with a back injury in recent weeks.

“I have been struggling a little bit with my back the last couple of weeks, so I probably needed a few lighter days anyway,” said Murray. “Yeah, I’ll get a chance to get home, start preparing on the grass and hopefully get a few good tournaments there.”

The 37-year-old was expected to make an early start to his grass court season next week in Surbiton, where he won the title last year.

However, the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) social media announced yesterday that Murray had withdrawn from the Challenger tournament.

“Unfortunately I won’t be back to defend my title this year,” Murray said in a statement to the LTA. “It’s been a tough decision but one my team and I felt we needed to make.”

LTA - Instagram 2024

Murray is now expected to begin his grass court season in Stuttgart, with the tournament beginning on Monday 10th June, ahead of what could be the Scot’s final Wimbledon. 

Inside the baseline…

Although it is not nice to see Andy Murray withdraw from tournaments at this stage of his career, it sounds like it is probably a sensible decision in the grand scheme of things. Murray has been very open about this probably being his final summer on tour, with Wimbledon having to be the priority for the former world No.1. Hopefully Murray can stay fit, and maybe even have one last run at the tournament where he is a two-time champion.

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.