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January 15, 2019

Andy Murray

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia


6-4, 6-4, 6-7, 6-7, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. Quite a collection of accolades on the screen there. What does it mean to you to have people you played against to say those things about you? How much will you miss all that?
ANDY MURRAY: I mean, I think that's one of the things in many ways has been nice and something that I'll look back on. Although we've been extremely competitive with each other, played in big matches, all of the slams and Olympics, things like that, I do think there is like a genuine respect between all of those guys and people that I have their numbers, we message from time to time and stuff, congratulate each other.

Yeah, that's something that I'm sure when we finish, when we finish playing, we'll remain friends. That's important at the end of the day.

Q. There was obviously the on-court interview where you were sort of not writing off your chances possibly of coming back. Did it take you aback at all, the finality about that video montage?
ANDY MURRAY: I mean, I have basically like two options. One is to take the next four and a half months off, then build up, you know, play Wimbledon. Look, I mean, although tonight was not comfortable in terms of my hip. At the end, I mean, I'm really struggling. I can't walk properly at all just now.

I could play another match, but if I want to try to play again, I want to improve my quality of life, because even if I take four months, I still can't walk. I'm still in pain doing just basic day-to-day things.

But having an operation like that, there's absolutely no guarantees I'd be able to play again. I'm fully aware of that. It's a really big operation. There's no guarantees that you can come back from that.

But there is the possibility, because guys have done it before. Bob Bryan is doing it just now. Some other athletes have given it a go. But, like I said, there's no guarantees. That's kind of the decision I have to make, that possibility of not having one more match by having the operation.

Q. It sounds like you are thinking maybe you will go ahead with the operation. Have you kind of made up your mind? How long will you take to make up your mind?
ANDY MURRAY: I mean, I'll probably decide in the next week or so. But that's what I was saying the other day, that this might be my last match. If I go ahead with the operation, I don't recover well from it, then I don't play again. I'm aware of that. That is the decision that I have to make. It will improve my quality of life, I'll be in less pain doing just, you know, normal things like walking around and putting your shoes and socks on and things.

Just now, like, going to walk my dogs, playing football with my friends, is like the worst thing I can think of doing. Like I hate it because it's so sore and it's uncomfortable. Yeah, waiting another five or six months to do something like that is just another, you know, period of where I'm really uncomfortable.

Yeah, I just don't really know yet. But, you know, if today was my last match, look, it was a brilliant way to finish, as well. That's something that I'll probably take into consideration, as well. It was an amazing atmosphere. I literally gave everything that I had on the court, fought as best as I could, and performed a lot better than what I should have done without the amount I've been able to practice and train, you know, whatever.

I'd be okay with that being my last match.

Q. What would you want your tennis legacy to be?
ANDY MURRAY: I don't know. I mean, I don't know what it will be, but I know that I did give my best, like, to the sport. Like, I tried as hard as I could. I practiced hard. I trained hard, probably too hard at certain stages in my career. That was something that I would change and do differently if I could go back.

But, yeah, I mean, I don't know. Like some people have said the last few days, I got everything out of my game and stuff. But I feel like I should have done better, you know, I could have done things differently. There's matches here, for example, that I would love to play again, have another opportunity to do that.

I don't know. I don't know what it will be, but I have tried my best.

Q. Can you describe the moment at 5-1 in the fifth when the crowd acknowledged you and you saluted them as well? Did that feel like the biggest moment in the match? You came into the interview afterwards saying you were feeling like you were going to be able to hold it together. Did you let it out earlier in that moment?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I mean, obviously that moment, I was emotional at that moment. It was cool. I don't think I've had that before in any matches. I don't know if when I came to serve at Wimbledon for Wimbledon, I don't know if that happened.

Look, it was brilliant. The atmosphere the whole match was amazing. I loved it. I'm really appreciative that the people gave me that atmosphere to play in. Yeah, I really enjoyed it.

Q. As you contemplate your retirement, had this competitive experience, how do you explain to your children what their dad has done?
ANDY MURRAY: Well, I don't know. I mean, I just tell them that, yeah, I played sports. I mean, my eldest daughter will soon hopefully be starting to play some sports. I can have a proper conversation and stuff with her already. I'm sure soon enough she'll understand.

But that's one of the things I said, like, that I wanted to be able to do. I would like my daughters to come and watch me play a tennis match, hopefully understand what's happening before I finish. But I'm aware that that probably isn't going to happen now. I'm a bit sad about that.

Q. Since Friday, obviously there's been this outpouring of messages online, people reached out to you. How have the past couple of days gone for you? Did you get to read all that? Did you try to avoid that?
ANDY MURRAY: It's kind of tough to avoid everything. I mean, look, I got a lot of messages from players, like coaches, my friends and family obviously. Actually once I chatted to you guys, although it was difficult for me, I felt a lot better because for like the last 18 months, I was struggling a lot.

When you're going to compete, you want to be positive and optimistic about things because you don't want to be telling your opponents, the guys you're competing against, how bad you're feeling. You get lots of people coming up and saying, How you getting on? Players and coaches and stuff. You sort of say like, yeah, you're doing okay, getting better, such and such. Actually you know you're really struggling.

That was kind of the first time I kind of came out and let everyone know how bad it's been and tough. I felt a lot better after that. But obviously, like, the reaction, I was really surprised. I genuinely was not expecting it to be like that at all. Yeah, it was really nice.

Q. If you do go ahead with this operation, have the doctors told you how long the recovery time is, how long the rehab time is, what sort of timeframe you're looking at?
ANDY MURRAY: It's not really based on time really. You know, the reason for having, like I said the other day, for having the operation first and foremost is to improve your quality of life. You have to allow bones to heal and muscles to recover properly to give the operation the best chance of improving your quality of life.

So me trying to get on a tennis court after two months and stuff just because I'm trying to get ready for Wimbledon might not be the best thing for my health in the future. So I need to kind of, if I have it, like just let it be, do the rehab properly, respect healing times, not rush anything.

I mean, I don't know exactly how long it would be.

Q. You said the other day you felt a bit helpless when you were playing on Thursday against Novak. Tonight you played at a pretty good level. What was the difference in those two levels, the reasons?
ANDY MURRAY: I was really nervous in the practice with Novak. I don't know why exactly. Maybe because he's someone that obviously I respect a lot and have competed against here many, many times.

I know that I'm not the same player as what I was. Also there's a little bit of me that, in every practice, in every match that I played in the last kind of year or so, like I'm holding back because I don't want to hurt my hip more.

Let's say in my practice with Novak, I fly around the court, my hip is really sore the next day, it maybe means I can't play the tournament here. So I'm always holding back.

Today I knew it was potentially the last match I play. I don't care if I damage my hip any more in the match, so it's a bit easier to deal with the pain because I know that I don't have to hit balls tomorrow, that if I'm really sore, I've been dealing with it a long time, I'll deal with it a few more days. It's not a big deal.

It was easier a little bit to deal with the pain today knowing that I'm not going to play another match for at least five months or maybe not again. So that helped.

Q. The Australian fans, if this is it, how would you describe your journey with them?
ANDY MURRAY: I mean, I've said it in a bunch of interviews and like on court, I have genuinely loved playing here. The fans love tennis, first and foremost. I think they're very knowledgeable about the game. They support really well, have created some amazing atmospheres for me and lots of the other players to play in. I've had brilliant support here always when I've played. There's a lot of Brits that live here, too.

Yeah, it's been really, really cool to play here over the years. Obviously tonight was the most special match that I played, even though it was the first round of the tournament and I lost.

Yeah, I certainly won't forget tonight, that's for sure.

Q. You're known for your will, ferocity, workouts. In some ways do you think you may have overdone it? Do you have some regrets about that?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, there's certain times, as well, where I would have done too much. It's a difficult one because once you start training a certain way, you have success doing it that way, it's easy to think that's what is giving you success, because you're training in such a way, your results improve, such and such.

Actually, for sure I would have been okay if I'd played a little bit less, taken a few more days off, spent a bit more time resting, as well. Again, like right now, it's something that frustrates me because of the situation I'm in, and I wish I had done things a little bit differently at times.

It's also been a flaw of mine. Like, some people might say, It's a positive thing that Andy worked really, really hard, such and such, trained hard. But I also often didn't stop myself when I was being told to do things. I should have sometimes said, No, I'm not doing that today. Or, No, I don't want to train today, I'm sore, I need a day off. I didn't do that. I would always kind of just go along with what I was being told.

That was a mistake.

Q. Have you talked to Bob Bryan before the surgery? If you do decide to go on with the surgery, have you decided where you'll have it done?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah, I've spoken to him a lot. Actually since, it started before the grass season last year, I started talking to him because he'd obviously had the problems with his hip. I started having my issues like from the French Open. Yeah, we kind of chatted a lot about it.

I spoke to his brother, as well, Mike, who also had some hip issues kind of early on in his career. Yeah, I've chatted to both of them quite a bit. Obviously Bob kind of more recently because I was interested to know how he was doing, like, after the operation, how he felt. I've spoken to him quite a bit.

Yeah, he's fairly optimistic about how he's feeling. I mean, he's only like five months into kind of rehabbing. He told me that he didn't do the rehab as well as he could have done early on. It will be interesting to see how he gets on.

Q. Did you take any painkillers before the match?
ANDY MURRAY: Yeah. Well, I had two paracetamol before the match, yeah.

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