Familiarity of Murray’s “tennis home” helps Scot kickstart farewell 2024 tour

The three-time Grand Slam champion beat Tomas Martin Etcheverry in Miami to record back-to-back wins for the first time since last August

Andy Murray, Miami Open, 2024 Andy Murray competes at Miami Open 2024 Zuma / Panoramic
Miami Open presented by Itau •Second round • completed
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Things could, at last, be falling into place for Andy Murray, as he approaches what appears to be the final stretch of his extraordinary career.

Over the course of his illustrious years on tour, the embattled Scot has never faced a more challenging period than the last seven months, during which time he failed to string together back-to-back wins and the spectre of retirement became an unwelcome repeated theme in his press conferences.

It must have been a relief, therefore, to arrive in Miami – a city that Murray has described as his “tennis home.”

The familiarity of an area that the three-time Grand Slam champion knows so well appears to have provided Murray with both an added impetus to do well, and a familiarity with the conditions that many other players won’t possess.

The former world No 1 avenged his flat first-round Australian Open defeat to Tomas Martin Etcheverry with an excellent victory over the Argentine in the second round of the Miami Open on Saturday, recording consecutive victories for the first time since August last year.

“Miami has been a special place for me during my career,” Murray said after the win.

“It’s been my tennis home really. I’ve done so much of my work and training and preparation here. I love the city.

“It’s just nice to get the chance to play another match like that – in an atmosphere. An atmosphere like that, at end, it was really nice.”

Murray avenges Australian Open defeat to Etcheverry in Miami

vocal miami crowd help provide intense atmosphere

Both Murray and Etcheverry enjoyed the fruits of a vocal and engaged Miami crowd in what was a thoroughly entertaining encounter, something that the Scot was quick to point out after the match.

“Always, when you’re playing against South American players, there’s always an intense atmosphere. But today I had a lot of support of my side as well – they were very fair for both of us. It’s just nice to get another opportunity to play a match here.

“You know, this is going to be my last time playing in Miami, so I wanted to play well and have good memories.”

After a supremely impressive display against Matteo Berrettini in the first round, Murray has now backed that up with a hugely satisfying victory over his Melbourne conqueror to finally get some form of momentum behind him.

It feels appropriate that this has been achieved in his second “tennis home” of Miami – a city so significant to Murray over the years.

The Scot will face the promising young Czech talent Tomas Machac next, as he seeks to truly kickstart the final leg of his wonderful career.

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