Andy Murray is trying to stay motivated after losing in the second round of Wimbledon 2023.
No one can be sure that the last time Andy Murray says goodbye to Centre Court is the last time he will do so.
Even the 36-year-old wasn’t sure what to do after he lost again in the second round at Wimbledon.
At the start of the 10th anniversary of Murray’s historic first title at the All England Club, when he ended Britain’s 77-year wait for a men’s singles winner, there was hope.
The hope was that he could win a memorable match against the fifth-seeded Greek player Stefanos Tsitsipas and get his most memorable win at a Grand Slam since he had hip surgery in 2019 to save his future.
At the end of the day, the previous number one player in the world wondered if all the work, pain, and sacrifice it takes to get far at Wimbledon is worth it.
Murray said, “I don’t know. I don’t know if I’ll be back next year. Motivation is a very important thing.
“Losing early in tournaments like this one won’t help that much if it keeps happening.”
Murray looked sad as he talked to reporters about his five-set loss to 24-year-old Tsitsipas. He looked very down as he explained what happened.
Nothing unusual happened. In the last few years, it has become normal for him to show raw emotion after tough losses at the place where he cares most about winning.
Murray said in 2021 that he needed to decide “if all the hard work is worth it” after Canada’s Denis Shapovalov stopped a promising run in the third round.
In 2022, Murray was just as sad after losing to American John Isner in the second round of Wimbledon. This was the fastest Murray had ever lost there.
Even though there was a lot of positive talk leading up to the event this year, the same thing happened at the end.
“Losing in the second round doesn’t motivate me, and it’s not why I work so hard,” Murray said. He hasn’t made it to the fourth round of a big tournament since Wimbledon in 2017.
“I guess it’s the same as last year. After giving it a lot of thought and talking to my family, I chose to keep going.
“I’m so incredibly sad and angry right now. Maybe I’ll feel better in a few days, but I don’t feel good right now.”
Murray has put all of his energy into making a strong run at the place where he won two of his three major titles this summer.
That makes it even harder to deal with the sadness.
Murray decided not to play in the clay-court French Open. Instead, he chose to start his training on the grass courts in Britain, where he does best.
When he went to the ATP Challenger Tour, the level below the main tour, he won titles in Surbiton and Nottingham.
Murray lost to Alex de Minaur when he moved up to Queen’s. This was a hard lesson for him. He claimed there was nothing to worry about.
But, most importantly, it meant he didn’t get a ranking and could have to play one of the best players in the first two rounds.
The draw set up a possible second-round match against Tsitsipas, who has been in the finals of two major tournaments and is expected to win one of the sport’s biggest prizes soon.
When that long-awaited meeting happened, Murray rose to the challenge, as he often does on the big stage, and showed flashes of his best.
Tsitsipas had to play his best match on grass in a long time in order to win. This shows how well he played.
Even that didn’t help Murray, who knows he can still compete with the best in the world.
“Of course I can. From how the match went, it’s clear. “There weren’t that many points between us,” he said.
“But it’s not just about beating them every now and then. To do well in these events, you have to win a lot of games in a row. I haven’t done it.”
Murray is not the type of player to make big choices quickly, and the fact that he has come back from very bad situations to keep playing shows how much he loves the game.
Murray said last weekend that he had a “idea in my head” of when he wanted to stop playing. This doesn’t look like a choice that will be made soon, but the pain of this latest Wimbledon loss could make them think again.
Tim Henman, who played on Murray’s Davis Cup team and has known him for a long time, thinks the Scot will look better when “the dust has settled.”
“Now that Andy is a little bit older, he’s got a wiser head, and he’s right not to commit to anything,” he said.
“He will think about how hard he has worked this year. He moved down to the Challenger level to play and won two on grass. That brings out the need and hunger.
“That desire is still strong, and I really hope that Andy will get what he wants.”