“The boys are not particularly close”


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Andy Murray was not surprised that Novak Djokovic has already won his ninth Australian Open. From the perspective of the three-time Grand Slam and two-time Olympic gold medalist, the successor generations have not yet closed the gap to the “big three”, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Djokovic. Djokovic won his 18th major title on Sunday with a smooth three-set victory over Daniil Medvedev.

15 of the past 16 Grand Slam tournaments have been won by the “big three”, only Dominic Thiem made the exception at the US Open. However, Nadal was absent there due to Covid concerns, Federer due to an injury and Djokovic was disqualified prematurely.

“I expected the final to be closer, but I also knew how well Novak would play there,” said 33-year-old Murray. “It feels very different when you serve or wait for the return in a Grand Slam final than in a quarter or semi-final when you play against someone who has won 17 of these majors,” said Murray . “It’s pretty intimidating and the younger ones haven’t shown that they’re particularly close.”

He had wanted to play at the Australian Open himself. After a positive corona test, no quarantine that “worked” for him was possible, so he did not fly to Melbourne. He was so disappointed about it that he hardly followed the tournament. “I stopped following all the tennis players I follow on social networks because I really didn’t want to see them,” said Murray. The Scot is returning to the ATP Tour in Montpellier this week, for the first time since October.


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