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Thursday, June 01 2023

Murray pulls out of Delray Beach Open citing Covid fears

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London: Former world no.1 Andy Murray has pulled out of the Delray Beach Open because of Covid-19 fears. Murray, who is set to take part in the Australian Open in February, said that he wanted to avoid travelling to the United States to minimize risks ahead of the season’s first Grand Slam.

“After much deliberation with my team I’ve decided not to travel to play in Delray Beach. Given the increase in Covid rates and the transatlantic flights involved, I want to minimize the risks ahead of the Australian Open,” Murray was quoted as saying by BBC Sport.

Murray, 33, had accepted a wild card for the Delray Beach event, which is scheduled to be held from January 7 to 13. The Scot had missed most of the 2020 season due to complications from his hip injury and has struggled for form since returning to the tour after the Covid-19 induced break.

He has been offered a wild card for the delayed 2021 Australian Open, which starts on February 8. This will be the first time Murray will play in Melbourne since the 2019 event, where he said he was considering retiring from the sport after the tournament due to his hip injury.

Murray lost in five sets to Roberto Bautista Agut in the first round in 2019 after which the organisers had even played a video montage in tribute to his career featuring fellow tennis stars bidding him farewell. Eventually, however, he reversed his decision to retire.

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