Andy Murray Hails New Tennis Scheduling Regulations

Tennis - Australian Open - Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia - January 12, 2024 Britain's Andy Murray during press conference ahead of the Australian Open REUTERS/Edgar Su
Femi Onasanya By Femi Onasanya - Sports Reporter
5 Min Read

While Andy Murray isn’t discounting longer days at the Australian Open, he is pleased to see tennis finally tackling its late-night habit.

A new scheduling regulation that limits the number of matches played each day at events and establishes an 11 p.m. curfew for competitions to begin was announced earlier this week by the ATP and WTA.

Murray was involved in one of the latest endings in grand slam history last year when he finished a five-set triumph over Thanasi Kokkinakis in the second round of the Australian Open at 4.05 a.m.

Following the Scot’s harsh criticism of the schedule, the tournament decided to extend the event to 15 days, distributing the opening round over three days.

The day session at Rod Laver Arena and Margaret Court Arena will consist of a minimum of two matches instead of three, although the night session will still commence at 7 p.m. with two matches.

Murray stated, “I don’t think the Sunday start will change the late finishes.” “I believe there are two day matches and two nighttime matches taking place on center court.

“It is unlikely that there will be problems with the day session continuing into the night, then having that gap where they have to clear out the stadium and get the night session fans in, so I think that will lessen the possibility of late finishes on Rod Laver.”

“That could still happen, from what I understand, because there are other show courts where that isn’t changing.”

Murray praised the new regulations for the tours, stating, “It’s really good.” I’ve talked about it, and I’ve heard a lot of players and the media talk about it for a while. It’s only common sense. It’s evident that something has to change.

Nobody that I’ve spoken to actually disagrees with that. Therefore, it’s encouraging that some modifications will be implemented. I believe it will benefit everyone. It will undoubtedly aid in recuperation for games the next day and other events of similar nature.

“I think it just looks a little bit more professional if you’re not finishing at three or four in the morning, for both the fans and the tournament.”

In the opening round on Monday at Melbourne Park, Murray, who is making his 16th appearance in the main draw, will face 30th-seeded Argentinian Tomas Martin Etcheverry.

Despite entering this event devoid of victories, he cut a very frustrated figure at the close of the previous season and stated he is feeling better about his play.

He declared, “I really feel like I’m enjoying it better.” “I think part of that is the mental side of it. That is one of the challenges of the game of tennis. It can be challenging at times, and you’re clearly on your own when you’re having trouble.

“The way you’re playing, too. There is also the technical aspect to consider if you’re unhappy with your forehand and backhand strikes, your serving, or other performance-related issues, even though you know you’re capable of more.

“I feel better on the court now that some of those issues have been fixed. There should be some emphasis on the mental aspect as well. Changing your perspective on things is absolutely beneficial.

In their two lengthy meetings last year, Murray and Etcheverry shared the rewards.

Murray grinned and remarked, “I made most of my matches quite physical last year.” “I am aware that you ended up attending a lot longer rallies and things last year when I wasn’t serving well. I hope in a few days that won’t be the case.

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By Femi Onasanya Sports Reporter
Femi is a sport enthusiast, writer and commentator. Passionate about Sports and physical therapy with a flair for writing.