Murray braced for missing piece of career jigsaw
Date published :
08 Sep 2012 - 23:47:16
Andy Murray believes that his Olympic gold medal eased the heartbreak of his shattering Wimbledon defeat so much that he is now perfectly-placed to become Britain's first Grand Slam champion in 76 years.
Four times the 25-year-old Scot has made the final of a major and four times he has come up short, with his loss to Roger Federer at the All England Club in July ending with him in floods of tears.
"It's the last thing that I really want to achieve in my career, so that's why it's obviously very important for me," said Murray, who reached a second US Open final with a 5-7, 6-2, 6-1, 7-6 (9/7) win over Tomas Berdych on Saturday.
"Winning the Olympics did take a bit of the pressure off. I did feel a lot better after that. Maybe had less doubts about myself and my place in the game just now.
"So, winning a major is the last thing that I really want to do. It means a lot to me. You saw at Wimbledon how much that meant to me. It's obviously not easy to lose another Slam final, so I hope this one is a different story."
Murray was still waiting to discover the identity of his US Open final opponent after Saturday's second semi-final was suspended because of severe weather conditions with defending champion Novak Djokovic trailing Spain's David Ferrer 5-2 in the first set.
That match was due to be completed on Sunday with the final pushed back to Monday for a fifth successive year.
Fred Perry's win in New York in 1936 remains the last time Britain celebrated a men's Grand Slam singles champion and with both Federer, beaten in the quarter-finals, and Rafael Nadal absent through injury, not involved, this could be Murray's best chance.
"I do think that even having played here and lost in the final, that is also a good experience to have gone through," said Murray, who lost to Federer in the 2008 US Open final.
"I think my results in the slams over the last couple of years have been very good. And obviously this year in the major tournaments along with the Olympics, it's been my best year," he said.
"Never made two Grand Slam finals in a year, so that's obviously a good sign that I'm playing better and still learning.
"Whatever happens in the final, it's been a great year. But all I want to make sure I do in the final is that I give 110 percent. I know how hard these opportunities are to come by."
Murray had a 6-5 career advantage over Ferrer but trails Djokovic 8-6.
Four of those matches with the Serb world number two have come this year with two wins apiece.
Djokovic won a marathon five-setter at the Australian Open semi-final before Murray triumphed in straight sets in the Olympic semi-finals.
"Novak and David are very, very experienced, so I'm sure they will deal with the situation," said Murray.