Murray retires at Queen's with back injury

Five-time champion loses control in his right leg in cinch Championship

By Paul Eddison, Sportsbeat

Andy Murray was forced to withdraw from the second round of the LTA’s cinch Championships at the Queen’s Club with injury.

With a record five Queen’s titles under his belt, Murray lasted five games against Australia’s Jordan Thompson, before a back injury forced him to retire while trailing 4-1.

While his back has been bothering him for a number of weeks, there was a new sensation for Murray, who lost all power in his right leg just before heading onto court.

He knew something was not right in his warm-up, and despite giving it a go, eventually had to retire – the first time he has done so mid-match since 2013.

Murray will undergo scans on the injury on Thursday, to evaluate the gravity of the issue, with Wimbledon less than a fortnight away.

He said: “My back has been a problem for quite a while. It’s been sore in the build-up to the tournament. It was pretty sore in my match yesterday and it was sore through today. I was able to manage it.

“It was not comfortable playing but I was able to manage it. During my pre-match warm-up, I was pretty uncomfortable. I walked up the stairs just before going on the court and I didn’t have the usual normal strength of my right leg. I did haven’t the usual feeling. The first two balls I hit in the warm-up, my right leg was completely uncoordinated. My right leg was just not working properly.

“I wouldn’t know (chances of playing Wimbledon). The back problems have predominantly been left-sided for me, for pretty much my whole career. Now I have issues with my right side. So maybe there is something that can be done between now and then to help the right side. We’ll get scans tomorrow and get it rechecked.”

Andy Murray needed treatment on his back during his match against Jordan Thompson
Andy Murray needed treatment on his back during his match against Jordan Thompson

Murray has dealt with a succession of different injuries since undergoing a first hip surgery in 2018, most recently suffering ligament damage in his ankle at the Miami Open in March.

At the French Open, his back was causing discomfort, but even after a decade of having to manage his back, he admits these were new symptoms, if not a new injury.

He said: “I don’t know what it would be because I don’t know what the problem is. I haven’t experienced that before. I’ve been dealing with the back today, yesterday and for the last 10 or 11 years of my career. But I’ve never experienced that before. So I don’t know what the procedure will be or what to expect.

“This doesn’t feel like a new injury that has happened today. This is something that has been ongoing and got progressively worse. Although the last few years might have seemed ok, it’s been hard, it’s been really hard on the body.

“Physically it’s been tough, a lot of days where it’s not been that much fun to train and practise. I’ve tried to work through it and find ways to get on the court and compete at this level. But tennis is a really hard sport and as you start to age, your body has got a lot of wear and tear.”

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