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Andy Murray withdraws from singles, just over a week after back surgery

Storm Sanders was Australia’s hero after she won the first singles rubber before returning for the deciding doubles match alongside 38-year-old Samantha Stosur.

Andy Murray of Great Britain leaves the practice court during day two of The Championships Wimbledon 2024 at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 02, 2024 in London, England.
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Andy Murray withdrew from singles at Wimbledon a little more than a week after surgery to remove a cyst from his spine, and the two-time men’s champion at the All England Club said he would make his farewell appearance at the tournament by playing doubles with his older brother, Jamie.

“I’m disappointed. I wanted to play in the tournament, and I wanted to have a chance to go out there and walk out on my own on Centre Court again and give it another go. But I also was only going to do that if I felt like I could be competitive. And I didn’t feel like that today,” Murray said.

“I’m sorry, obviously, for everyone that came and wanted to support and watch again. And I wanted that moment, as well, as much for me as for the people that have supported me over the years. The fans, but also my closest friends, family, my team. It was important for me to do that with them, as well,” he said. “It’s one of those things. Unfortunate. The timing was horrible. The surgery was a complex one. It wasn’t to be.”

The 37-year-old Murray — who has been planning to retire after the Paris Olympics, which start later this month — was supposed to face Tomas Machac at Centre Court on Tuesday in the first round of singles. Murray was replaced in the bracket by David Goffin, who lost during qualifying rounds last week.

Murray won Wimbledon in 2013 and 2016; the first of those made him the first British men’s singles champion at the tournament in 77 years, and he was awarded a knighthood by Queen Elizabeth II after the second title.

He said over the weekend that he was hoping for “maybe a bit of closure” by getting one more chance to “feel that buzz” of playing at Centre Court before the end of his career.

He won the U.S. Open in 2012, made it to No. 1 in the ATP rankings and is the only player to win two consecutive singles gold medals at an Olympics. Those titles came at London in 2012 — when the matches held were at the All England Club — and at Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

Murray came along during an era of unprecedented excellence in men’s tennis, dominated by the Big Three of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. That trio has combined for 66 Grand Slam titles — led by the 24 for Djokovic, who was born a week after Murray in May…

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