Tennis star Andy Murray left a press conference in Melbourne in the last couple of minutes in floods of tears admitting that he has decided to retire in 2019.
A severe hip and back injury has plagued the Scot for years. He missed multiple grand slams over the last two years as a result of the recurring injury and he says that he will now be forced to call it a day once and for all.
Crying, stopping and then sobbing, Murray said that he would like to finish at Wimbledon this year, where he won the tournament 3 times, but admitted that it was more than likely he won’t make it that far and that next week’s Australian Open will likely be the end of his career.
“Obviously I’ve been struggling for a long time, and I’ve been in a lot of pain for about 20 months now,” said Murray, who is scheduled to face Spainiard Roberto Bautista Agut in the first round on Monday.
“I’ve pretty much done everything that I could to try and get my hip feeling better and it hasn’t helped loads. I’m in a better place than I was six months ago but still in a lot of pain. It’s been tough.
“I’m going to play. I can still play to a level, just not a level that I’m happy playing at. But it’s not just that. The pain is too much really and I don’t want to continue playing that way.”
Murray then shocked the reporters by declaring that he had already spoken to his team before Christmas about finishing up. He wants to make it to the end of Wimbledon but he may not make it that far as the pain is too severe.
“I told them I can’t keep doing this, and I needed to have an end point because I was playing with no idea when the pain was going to stop,” he added. “I told them I think I can get through this until Wimbledon. That’s where I’d like to stop playing, but I’m also not certain I will able to do that.”
And when asked if the Australian Open could be his final tournament, he said: “Yes I think there’s a chance of that for sure because I’m not sure I’m able to play through the pain for another four or five months.
“I have an option to have another operation, which is a little bit more severe than what I’ve had before in having my hip resurfaced, which will allow me to have a better quality of life and be out of pain.
“That’s something I’m seriously considering right now. Some athletes have had that and gone back to competing but there’s obviously no guarantees with that and the reason for having an operation like that is not to return to professional sport, it’s just for a better quality of life.”
This story is developing.
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