Andy Murray has been forced to withdraw from the Davis Cup and end his season after suffering a shoulder injury in training. He had been training at the National Tennis Centre this week and preparing for the final event of the year when he suffered the injury. Great Britain face Serbia on Thursday in Málaga at the Final 8 knockout stage of the Davis Cup finals.
Murray stated that he sustained a slight shoulder injury and will not be able to participate in the Davis Cup. He expressed disappointment in not being able to join the team, but is currently focused on recovering and preparing for the upcoming season.
The injury marks the end of a tough second half of the season for Murray, which is both disheartening and appropriate. He has only won one out of his last six matches and while he did secure his ranking by winning three ATP Challenger titles during the summer, he has only been able to win multiple matches at an ATP level once since March.
His challenging run-in culminated in a brutal loss to Alex de Minaur at the Paris Masters after holding a 5-2 third set lead and match point. Afterwards, Murray admitted that he has not been competing with joy over the final months of the season.
Murray’s poor performance was the reason for the 36-year-old’s decision to part ways with his coach, Ivan Lendl. The Davis Cup could have been a chance for him to finish the year on a high note, and the possibility of playing against his long-time rival Novak Djokovic for the first time since 2017 would have been highly motivating. However, Murray has chosen to focus on getting ready for the upcoming season, starting with the Brisbane International in January followed by the Australian Open.
Meanwhile, Murray will have plenty of time to contemplate his future in the sport.
Great Britain successfully progressed from the initial round of the Davis Cup with a formidable team and a plethora of choices, highlighted by their top four individual players who are ranked within or close to the top 50. These players all participated in the September matches during their victorious week in Manchester.
Dan Evans, who played a crucial role in Great Britain’s advancement to the quarter-finals, will no longer be present in Málaga due to a calf injury sustained during his match against Frances Tiafoe in Vienna last month. This injury has ended his season and he will not be able to participate in any further matches.
Murray and Evans not being present makes it clear who will be on Great Britain’s team in Málaga, but they still have a chance to make it to the semi-finals. The team will once again be led by Cameron Norrie, who has not been performing well in recent months, with a record of 8 losses in his last 10 matches. In order to prepare for the Davis Cup, he took a break after losing in Vienna last month and also skipped the Paris Masters. He has been training at the ATP Finals in Turin for the past few days.
If Djokovic chooses to participate in the Málaga competition, he will most likely be the favored player against Norrie. This could put pressure on the second players to win in the singles match, making it crucial for Great Britain. Jack Draper, who serves as Great Britain’s second player, has shown signs of returning to his top performance after recovering from an injury. He narrowly lost in his first ATP final in Sofia last week and also won an ATP Challenger in Bergamo. The 21-year-old also made his debut in Davis Cup in Manchester, where he narrowly defeated Thanasi Kokkinakis in a match against Australia.
Two of the top doubles players in the world, who have won the last two grand slam titles (Wimbledon and US Open), complete the team: Neal Skupski, the Wimbledon champion, and Joe Salisbury, the US Open champion who joined the team when Evans had to withdraw. The LTA may announce a fifth player at a later time.