'I need to see what happens' - Murray unsure of Olympics participation

By Sports Desk June 12, 2024

Andy Murray cast doubt over his participation at the Olympic Games in Paris next month, saying he is "not 100 per cent sure what the situation is".

Murray is a two-time Olympic champion, having won men's singles gold medals in 2012 - the year he also won a silver medal in the mixed doubles alongside Laura Robson - and 2016.

The three-time grand slam winner is eligible to compete in the singles in Paris, where two places are reserved for former Olympic or major champions.

Although, he appears set to miss out on the doubles, regardless, with Great Britain set to send Joe Salisbury and Neal Skupski.

The tournament could prove to be the final one in the career of Murray, who revealed in February that he does not "plan on playing much past this summer".

He suffered a third successive first-round defeat in Stuttgart, having also fallen at that stage in the French Open, which will see him drop out of the world's top 100 for the first time in two years.

And Murray is uncertain if he will feature at the quadrennial event.

"I need to see what happens with the Olympics," he told reporters after losing to Marcos Giron in Stuttgart. 

"I'm not 100 per cent sure what the situation is there with the doubles yet and whether or not I will play if I just get in the singles. I don't know.

"My body didn't feel great playing on the clay in the last month or so. I had quite a few issues with my back, so I don't know if I would go just for singles. I need to wait a little bit and see on that."

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    Barbora Krejcikova paid an emotional tribute to Jana Novotna following her semi-final victory against Elena Rybakina at Wimbledon. 

    Krejcikova came from a set down to emerge victorious, beating the 2022 Wimbledon champion 3-6 6-3 6-4 in a remarkable turnaround on Centre Court. 

    The world number 31 became the seventh Czech-born woman to reach a women's singles final at Wimbledon in the Open Era, following in the footsteps of her former coach. 

    Novotna, who won the competition in 1998 when she defeated France's Nathalie Tauziat, passed away in 2017 from ovarian cancer at the age of 49. 

    The pair first met when Krejcikova was 18 years old, with the 28-year-old reduced to tears as she dedicated the win to her former friend in her post-match interview. 

    "I just miss her very much, I miss her so much," Krejcikova said after reaching her first Wimbledon women's singles final.

    "Definitely I remember thinking about Jana a lot. I have so many beautiful memories and when I step on the court here, I am fighting for every ball, and I am sure that is what she would want me to do.

    "She was telling me a lot of stories about her journey here and how she was trying to win Wimbledon. I was so far away when we had this talk.

    "Now I am here and I am in a final!

    "I remember thinking about her a lot. I have so many beautiful memories and when I step on the court I fight for every single ball as that is what she would want me to do."

    Krejcikova will face Jasmine Paolini in Saturday's final in what will be the first women's singles final at a grand slam during the Open Era where two opponents have previously met in a grand slam qualifier. 

    The Czech won in straight sets in the aforementioned clash at the Australian Open in 2018 and is expecting a tough encounter against the world number seven. 

    "A big fight. I know that she is a huge fighter and she showed today, but it will be the same from me. We are playing great tennis and it will be a great match on Saturday."

  • Wimbledon: 'I thought I was going to die' – Vekic punished in marathon semi-final defeat Wimbledon: 'I thought I was going to die' – Vekic punished in marathon semi-final defeat

    Donna Vekic revealed she was in "so much pain" in her record-breaking Wimbledon semi-final defeat to Jasmine Paolini, explaining her tears in the third set of a marathon match.

    Vekic let slip a first-set lead to lose 2-6 6-4 7-6 (10-8) on Centre Court and miss out on a major final debut.

    It appeared emotions had got the better of the first-time semi-finalist as victory slipped away despite a further early break in the decider, eventually losing after two hours and 51 minutes.

    This was the longest women's singles semi in Wimbledon history, and Vekic insisted her tears were provoked by the punishment her body took in the epic encounter.

    "I thought I was going to die in the third set," Vekic said in her post-match news conference. "I had so much pain in my arm, in my leg.

    "It was not easy out there, but I will recover.

    "I was more crying because I had so much pain, I didn't know how I could keep playing. My team tells me I can be proud of myself.

    "It's tough right now. It's really tough to be positive right now. It was so close." 

    Paolini will now play Barbora Krejcikova in Saturday's final, her second grand slam title match after losing to perennial French Open champion Iga Swiatek at Roland Garros in June.

    "Two grand slam finals in a row was crazy to believe, I think, no?" Paolini said. "I'm also surprised how at the moment, until now in this moment, I'm living this.

    "I feel maybe Saturday I will be so nervous, I don't know, but I feel also relaxed. I'm the same person. I'm doing the same things. I'm surprised a little bit how I'm managing this.

    "I don't want to say more, because maybe Saturday I'm going to be shaking. I'm surprising myself to live this with with really relaxing mood."

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    Barbora Krejcikova came from a set down to stun Elena Rybakina to reach the Wimbledon final where she will face Jasmine Paolini on Saturday. 

    Krejcikova extended her unbeaten record against the Kazakh world number four to three matches, emerging a 3-6 6-3 6-4 victor on Centre Court. 

    The opening two games saw Rybakina assert her dominance, securing a break point early on as she racked up a four-game lead without reply. 

    Krejcikova would get her first game on the board soon after and would find a break of her own in the eighth game, but her slow start was punished as Rybakina saw out the first set, serving five aces along the way. 

    Krejcikova found her rhythm, but she made hard work of sealing the second set after serving two double faults in the ninth game, opening the door for her opponent. However, she was able to get the job done to take the game to a decider. 

    Krejcikova and Rybakina exchanged a number of long rallies in the third set, but it would be the world number 31 who would get the decisive break point. 

    The seventh game saw Rybakina lead with a service hold to love, but Krejcikova then put three games together on the spin to edge closer to victory. 

    There was to be no comeback for the 2022 Wimbledon champion, as Krejcikova completed the turnaround on serve as Rybakina sent a forehand long to confirm her remarkable triumph. 

    "Unbelievable. "It is very tough to explain, but a lot of joy and a lot of emotions. Also there is a lot of relief and I am super proud," Krejcikova said in her post-match interview.

    "I am so proud about my game and my fighting spirit today.

    "I was trying to fight for every single ball, during the second set I was getting my momentum and when I broke her I started to be in the zone and I didn't want to leave the zone."

    Data Debrief: Krejcikova ends wait for grand slam final appearance

    It has been a long time coming for Krejcikova, who reached her first grand slam final since Roland-Garros in 2021. 

    The Czech is the player with the most women’s singles grand slam main draw appearances between their first two Major finals (13, Roland-Garros 2021 and Wimbledon 2024), since Karolina Pliskova (18 between the US 2016 and then Wimbledon 2021). 

    Her meeting with Paolini on Saturday will be the first women's singles final at a grand slam during the Open Era, where the two opponents previously met in a grand slam qualifier, doing so at the Australian Open 2018.

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