Andy Murray will skip the French Open and the whole of the clay court season as he plots his course through the rest of 2022.
Back in action in Rotterdam next week for the first time since his second-round exit at the Australian Open, the former Wimbledon champion is taking a bigger-picture view of the year ahead.
Looking for a new coach after a trial period with Jan De Witt ended after Melbourne, Murray is in Holland and once again working with Dani Vallverdu.
He is available while Stan Wawrinka recovers his fitness but, whoever becomes Murray’s next permanent coach, Rolland Garros will not be forming part of their schedule.
“Right now I am not planning on playing through the clay,” Murray said on Sunday.
“The past couple of years, the clay has made issues worse; last year I had some issues at the beginning of the year, the clay didn’t help, so I’ve spoken to my team about that and this year while I feel good and healthy, I don’t want to take that risk.
“It’s not that I wouldn’t potentially play on clay in the future. Last year I almost missed Wimbledon, was close to not playing the grass season, I’m not planning on playing the clay. I will still try to compete a bit during that period, I won’t do nothing, that’s my plan just now.
“I had a busy end of last year and the next couple of months I won’t take any risks and hopefully get a good build up to the grass season.”
Vallverdu will be with him in Rotterdam, landing on Sunday, but Murray knows he will need to look elsewhere to solve his coaching conundrum in the longer term.
“It’s not been easy to find someone,” he said. “Obviously, Stan Warwinka has been rehabbing for quite a long time and is hopefully coming back to the tour, but he agreed for Dani to come and work with me for a few weeks over the next month or so which is great for me in the short term, but still trying to find a longer-term solution.
“It’s not that straightforward, I’m not as in demand as a few years ago. Ultimately, I want it to be the right person. I’m aware there’s no perfect setup, but medium, longer term I want some stability and will try and get that in the next few weeks.”
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