Murray's Wimbledon career over as Raducanu pulls out of mixed

Andy Murray's Wimbledon career is over (Ben Stansall)
Andy Murray's Wimbledon career is over (Ben Stansall)

Andy Murray's iconic Wimbledon career ended with a whimper on Saturday when his mixed doubles partner Emma Raducanu pulled out of the event, denying the former champion one last appearance at the All England Club.

Murray was due to have a final Wimbledon swansong with fellow Briton Raducanu after losing in the men's doubles with his brother Jamie on Thursday.

The 37-year-old is set to retire following the Paris Olympics, which start on July 26.

Murray, a two-time Wimbledon champion, and Raducanu, who won the US Open in 2021, were scheduled to play Zhang Shuai and Marcelo Arevalo in the fourth match on Court One on Saturday.

But Raducanu withdrew several hours before the match in a bid to ensure she did not aggravate a wrist problem.

"Unfortunately I woke up with some stiffness in my right wrist, so therefore I have decided to make the very tough decision to withdraw from the mixed doubles tonight," she said in a statement.

"I'm disappointed as I was really looking forward to playing with Andy but got to take care."

Murray was reportedly disappointed to be denied one more match on the Wimbledon grass.

Writing on X, Murray's mother Judy described the news that Raducanu had pulled out as "astonishing".

Murray produced some of the most memorable moments in recent Wimbledon history, leaving a legacy that the Princess of Wales was quick to salute on Saturday.

"An incredible Wimbledon career comes to an end. You should be so very proud Andy Murray. On behalf of all of us, thank you! C," she wrote on X.

Murray became the first British man to win Wimbledon in 77 years when he beat Novak Djokovic in the 2013 final.

Emulating Fred Perry's success was a cathartic moment for Murray after his loss to Roger Federer in the Wimbledon final 12 months earlier.

He erased that tear-stained defeat by beating Federer to win a gold medal in the London Olympics at Wimbledon just weeks later.

Murray lifted the Wimbledon trophy again in 2016, defeating Milos Raonic in the final to clinch what would prove to be the last Grand Slam title of his career.

- 'It's time now' -

Playing in a golden era for men's tennis, Murray -- who reached 11 Slam finals -- was denied more silverware due to Federer, Djokovic and Rafael Nadal's stranglehold on the sport's major prizes.

Injuries also played a major role in the former world number one's decline in recent years.

After having a metal hip inserted in 2019, suffering ankle damage and undergoing surgery to remove a cyst from his spine -- which ruled him out of the singles at this year's Wimbledon -- Murray has been on a farewell tour of the grass-court Grand Slam.

Murray and brother Jamie were defeated 7-6 (8/6), 6-4 by Rinky Hijikata and John Peers of Australia in the first round of men's doubles.

The Scot, a three-time Grand Slam winner, was given an emotional Centre Court send-off in front of his wife Kim and two of his children following that defeat.

He gave a tearful on-court interview in which he insisted there would be no change of heart about his decision to retire imminently.

"I know that it's time now. I'm ready for that," he said.

Murray will head off on a family holiday before preparing for the final event of his career at the Olympics, where he is entered in the singles event and the doubles with Dan Evans.

After beating ninth seed Maria Sakkari on Friday, Raducanu is due to play New Zealand qualifier Lulu Sun in the Wimbledon fourth round on Sunday.

She is aiming to reach the quarter-finals of a Grand Slam for the first time since her remarkable run at the US Open three years ago.

Raducanu, who has struggled with injuries since her triumph in New York, was seen practising at the All England Club on Saturday prior to the announcement of her mixed doubles withdrawal.

She had said the scheduling "was not ideal" after her mixed doubles match with Murray was given a late slot on Saturday, which would have offered little recovery time before facing Sun in the singles.