Andy Murray playing only doubles at his last Wimbledon after back surgery

LONDON — Two-time Wimbledon champion Andy Murray will play only doubles at his last appearance at the All England Club following his withdrawal from singles on Tuesday, just over a week after back surgery.

The 37-year-old Murray pulled out of the singles competition hours before he was supposed to play Tomas Machac on Centre Court.

“Unfortunately, despite working incredibly hard on his recovery since his operation just over a week ago, Andy has taken the very difficult decision not to play the singles this year,” his management team said in a statement. “As you can imagine, he is extremely disappointed but has confirmed that he will be playing in the doubles with Jamie and looks forward to competing at Wimbledon for the last time.”

Murray had surgery on June 22 to remove a cyst from his spinal cord.

Murray has said he wants to retire after the Paris Olympics, which start later this month.

He’s never passed the second round in Grand Slam men’s doubles.

He has dealt with injuries in recent years, including a bad hip that required two procedures.

Murray stopped playing during a second-round match at the grass-court tournament at Queen’s Club in London last month because he was having trouble walking. He later explained that the cyst was compressing a nerve in his back and leaving his right leg numb.

Murray owns three major championships: The U.S. Open in 2012 and Wimbledon in 2013 and 2016. His 2013 title made him the first British man to win the Wimbledon singles in 77 years.

He reached No. 1 in the ATP rankings and is the only player with two consecutive tennis gold medals in Olympic singles. He won at London in 2012 — when the Summer Games matches were at the All England Club — and at Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

Murray underwent hip operations in 2018 and 2019. While he thought he would need to retire after the second surgery, in which he received a metal hip implant, Murray eventually returned to action.

He has since been hampered by various issues, including tearing ligaments in his left ankle at the Miami Open in March.

Murray lost in the first round of the French Open in May.

He had been practicing in recent days at the All England Club and undergoing medical tests to see whether he would be able to compete at what was expected to be his farewell to Wimbledon.


AP tennis:

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