Andy Murray spurred on by more Centre Court nights after another dramatic late finish at Wimbledon

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 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Andy Murray is being spurred on by more Centre Court nights after another dramatic late finish under the roof.

Murray had to fight back from two sets to one down against Oscar Otte cheered on by a fervent crowd.

And afterwards he admitted nights like that were a big motivating factor in staying in the game despite the injury setbacks of the past four years.

“That’s one of the reasons why I’m still playing because of moments like that,” he said. “Why would you want to give that up? The atmosphere… especially the last hour and a half was brilliant. I still enjoy that.

“Playing in atmospheres like that and creating moments and memories like that is one of the reasons why I’m still playing.”

 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

Murray looks certain to be the late match once more on Centre tomorrow against No10 seed Denis Shapovalov, which will be another step-up in class from Otte, who produced a performance far more accomplished than his world ranking of 151 suggested.

And the 34-year-old said his best shot of toppling a second seed at this year’s Wimbledon – he beat No24 Nikoloz Basilashvili in his opening-round match – was to again whip the crowd into a frenzy.

“I need to have more energy, I need to try and engage with the crowd more,” he said. “I picked a few people in the crowd and was basically staring at them pretty much after every point and trying to just engage with them.

“The crowd created a great atmosphere but I was also engaging with them and we were feeding off each other a lot at the end. I know what a great atmosphere is in tennis. I have played in a few of them over the years, and that was definitely one of them.”

 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

Murray interacted with a trio of individual fans in particular, including one in a Scotland rugby shirt he gifted with a towel afterwards.

He added: “I hope the fans like it and don’t think that it’s a bit weird that I’m sort of staring at them and screaming at them for like an hour but they seem to enjoy it.”

Much like his first-round encounter, at times, it was a far from enjoyable watch as Murray let a 6-3 3-1 slip away from him as Otte took the subsequent two sets and both the Scot and the crowd were briefly silenced.

With the light fading, the players came off for 15 minutes to close the roof, a moment that for a second successive match seemed to swing the match back in Murray’s favour.

Otte, who admitted afterwards that Murray was his idol, said: “I was really struggling with my serve when the roof was on top, also with the light. I know it’s for both players but I couldn’t find my serve rhythm anymore and I was serving worse.

“Who knows what could have happened? But yeah I think the break was maybe better for Andy and not for me with the roof.”

For Murray, it was his first five-set match since the US Open back in September. After that, his body failed to recover in time to put up any sort of challenge in his subsequent match.

 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

There was a scare when he fell twice, the first time screaming in agony and clutching his groin, which he has been nursing in recent weeks. But he said he was confident of being fit to play again.

Asked if it would be a problem, he said: “I don’t think so but sometimes when you make those movements and stuff it’s a bit of a sharp pain and then it’s either bad or fine. It’s not too bad.”

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