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August 24, 2018

Andy Murray

New York, NY, USA

THE MODERATOR: Please welcome 2012 champion Andy Murray.

Questions, please.

Q. It's been a week or so since Cincinnati. How are you feeling? How do you feel your preparations are going so far?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, I went to Philadelphia, did a bit of training there, more sort of gym-based stuff. I was on the court every day, but quite light practices.

Got here, and last few days practiced for a couple of hours each day with some of the players. It's been good. It's been difficult. It's just been quite -- my tennis has been a bit of stop-starty because, like, after Washington, took a few days off the court, then built back up again. Then obviously sort of light practicing last week.

My body feels better than it did a few weeks ago, so that's positive. Just being around these players and practicing with them more and more on a more consistent basis is going to help me improve.

Q. Best-of-five set matches, do you feel you're ready for that, your body is okay for that?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, I need to see. I haven't played one, so you don't know until you actually get out there and do it. That's the thing.

I played some long matches in Washington. They were all over two-and-a-half hours, and a three-hour match. Three of them in four days. The benefit of the slams is having that day off to recover in between, which will help me.

Q. What kind of expectations, goals do you have here?
ANDY MURRAY: My expectation is to give my best effort in the matches. Hopefully if I do that, my tennis will get better. Take each match at a time. It's kind of difficult to predict how you're going to do and say how far you're going to go in the event.

My tennis is getting better all the time. Just need to be on the court more consistently through till the end of the year.

Q. There was a lot of attention in the UK after your very late match. There were people writing it was a positive thing for men's mental health. We haven't seen you since. I wonder if you could say what was going through your mind that prompted your emotions?
ANDY MURRAY: I mean, I saw little bits. Obviously I was over here. I didn't see loads.

Well, I mean, there were lots of things going on. I mean, it was an extremely long day, very long, tough match that had a bunch of ups and downs that I managed to come through. I was physically tired. My body was sore. I hadn't been in that sort of match or position for a really long time.

It was a combination of lots of things, I would assume. It's strange that during the match, I wouldn't have anticipated that that's how I would have felt kind of at the end of it.

But, yeah, obviously was just really emotional for lots and lots of different reasons. I don't think it was just one thing in particular. I mean, yeah, it's difficult to pinpoint sort of just one thing in particular.

Q. (Question about the children.)
ANDY MURRAY: They're here. They arrived a few days ago, so I hadn't seen them for three or four weeks. Obviously they change a lot in that time, which is nice in some ways to see after a period because you've changed a bit, but also sad that maybe you've missed some stuff.

That was the best part about being injured, or the only good part about being injured, was I got to spend lots and lots of time with them growing up. That's been nice. So it was the most positive part about being injured and the downside of being back on the road again. I'm happy that they're here.

Q. Some of the great memories of your career have come on the courts here. Can you reflect for a moment on what this place has meant for you.
ANDY MURRAY: I don't have many good memories on this court (laughter). I like what they've done with it. It looks amazing. They've done a really good job.

But, yeah, I have great memories from New York overall from juniors to first slam final to then obviously winning my first Grand Slam here. So, yeah, I got lots of great memories.

I'm happy that I'm able to be back competing again here. It was tough missing it last year. I was pretty upset at the time. Yeah, really, really pleased to be back. I'll try to enjoy it as much as I can.

Q. (Question about comebacks after injuries.)
ANDY MURRAY: All injuries are completely different. Some are more serious than others. Someone is out for a few weeks with a muscle injury, it's very different to somebody recovering from a surgery on certain parts of the body. It's notoriously more difficult.

I haven't really looked at them so much as an inspiration for a comeback. I'm trying to deal with the situation that I've been in as best as I can myself.

But I do feel that once my body is right again, which takes time when you haven't played many matches in a year, I'm sure that my level will be okay to get me competing at the top of the game again.

Q. (Question about being surprised by the level of play.)
ANDY MURRAY: No, not really, because of the level of tennis that he's capable of playing. I don't think any of the players just now have reached the level that he had gotten to. Unless some of the younger guys improve, which they will do over time, whether that takes another 18 months, a couple of years, it will happen.

Right now I think the level of those guys, Roger, Rafa, Novak, is higher. Once they're fit and healthy, they're always going to be competing for the biggest events.

Q. You've been quite active on Instagram over the last few months, visiting the UN, went on a rollercoaster. Having spent so much time away from the sport, are you trying to appreciate more traveling, doing other things, maybe in the past you've been focused on the tennis all the time?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, I want to enjoy as much as I can the next few years, for sure. I mean, maybe that's something to appreciate more while you've been away from the game. Yeah, I mean, I've done stuff in the past. Maybe I haven't always put it on social media, but I have done things in the past.

It's been nice. I do want to make sure I make the most of the next few years because you never know exactly what's around the corner. Obviously 12 months, 14 months ago, I wouldn't have anticipated what was about to happen. So, yeah, want to make the most of each week.

Q. (Question about new Davis Cup format and how he would have voted.)
ANDY MURRAY: I would have abstained. Neither are the correct solution, I don't think, in my opinion. From pretty much every single player that I've spoken to, and I've been in players council meetings where we've discussed things with the ITF and stuff, is that all players love playing Davis Cup. You can't question that. You watch the players play, the passion and how much they get out of it.

But obviously something wasn't working because the top players were not playing. Whether that was because of scheduling, coming immediately after the slams, things like that. Possibly because it was every single year and it was a bit too demanding.

I think there was potentially less drastic changes that could have taken place to make it better, like even keeping potentially the same format but doing it every couple of years. I've heard lots of different ideas and discussions that were not quite as drastic as what's happened.

I don't think that having a week-long team event in the middle of November, followed by a week-long team event at the beginning of January, I think that's confusing for fans. I don't think that it makes it easy for the players to decide, like, which one's more important. Do you play the ITF one or the ATP one. It's not a perfect fix.

But you have to give the decision that's been made, you need to give it a chance to work and see. We should try to get behind it and support it and see if it works. If it does, fantastic. But if not, I believe you can always change and go back. That's also an option.

Q. How important is it to be here at a slam, since you've been away from slams for a while?
ANDY MURRAY: It is. I mean, these are the tournaments, like, for pretty much -- well, the last 10 or 11 years of my life I've dedicated all of my sort of training and off-seasons and stuff to prepare to perform well in these events. Missing them is hard, and also coming back to them is great.

You know, it feels slightly different, this one because, again, for the last 10 years or so I've been coming and trying to prepare to win the event, whereas I don't feel like that's realistic for me this year. It's a slightly different mentality for me coming in than what I have had the last 10, 11 years of my life.

That feels a bit odd.


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