I feel well prepared – Andy Murray is ready to perform at the Australian Open

Andy Murray is feeling ready to make a statement at the Australian Open as he prepares to face Matteo Berrettini on Tuesday.

The old world number one could be forgiven for cursing his luck after pulling the former Wimbledon finalist, who made the last four here last year, in the first round, but Murray is clearly taking the chance to cause an upset.

“Obviously it’s a tough draw,” he said. “But I also feel like I’m in a much better place than I was during any slam last year.

“I feel well prepared, ready to play a top player early in the event, whereas maybe last year my game didn’t feel that good and getting a tough draw, a tough match early in the tournament didn’t feel good to me. I felt great.”

Murray’s troubled hip has held up well over the past year and has had no major injury-related shortcomings, but he has neither achieved results nor played the tennis he had hoped for.

After battling cramps in the second half of the season, he admitted bluntly that he felt his form allowed him to drop.

Despite losing his only competitive warm-up match to Sebastian Korda in Adelaide last week at a pre-season training camp with coach Ivan Lendl in the US, he said he put on a strong performance beating the leading juniors at the show tournament in Kooyong. Australian Alex de Minaur.

“A good practice period gave me some time to work on some things and improve things,” the 35-year-old said.

“Out of the court, I’ve done a lot of work physically in the gym and in the games I’ve played, in Kooyong or in Adelaide or in Scotland (Battle of the Battle). Brits last month), my movement and belongings are important as they will be at this stage last year. was substantially better.

“When I move well, I tend to play well, and that’s really important to me. Maybe that’s what I was happiest with. Conditions play out pretty fast here, so being light on your feet is even more important.

Murray and Berrettini are familiar foes who have met four times in recent years and the Italian is leading 3-1.

Andy Murray won two matches at the Kooyong exhibition this week

Andy Murray won two matches at the Kooyong exhibition this week (Asanka Brendon Ratnayake/AP)

Their last match came in the third round of the US Open last summer, with Murray frustrated by a four-set defeat.

“Of course the US Open game was close, the game we played in Stuttgart was close and I won against him in Beijing,” said Scot.

“Compared to where I felt at the US Open, I know how I feel today and I’m playing better, I’m in a better place physically. I feel well prepared for the event.”

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