Skip to content

Andy Murray's French Open first-round draw brings back painful memories against Stan Wawrinka

Andy Murray, who is wielding his new racket, recalls some painful memories when playing Stan Wawrinka at Roland Garros in 2017; You can watch the Geneva Open final on Saturday, exclusively live on Sky Sports Tennis

Switzerland's Stan Wawrinka, left, cheers Britain's Andy Murray after their semifinal match of the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium, Friday, June 9, 2017 in Paris. Wawrinka won 6-7 (6), 6-3, 5-7, 7-6 (3), 6-1. (AP Photo/David Vincent)
Image: Andy Murray recalled the day his hip was pushed to beyond the state of repair against Stan Wawrinka at the French Open in 2017

Andy Murray's French Open first-round draw brought back some painful memories as he recalled the day his hip was pushed to beyond the state of repair against Stan Wawrinka in 2017.

Murray, then world No 1, lost an epic semi-final in five brutal sets in a match which ultimately forced him into undergoing career-saving surgery.

Seven years on the three-time Grand Slam winners, now with a combined age of 76 and three original hips between them, meet again at Roland Garros on Sunday.

Murray's only match in Paris since that painful encounter was a one-sided loss to the same player four years ago - the 22nd meeting of their long, illustrious careers.

Andy Murray's last three opponents at Roland Garros:

2017: Stan Wawrinka (SF)

2020: Stan Wawrinka (R1)

2024: Stan Wawrinka (R1)

"I remember before the quarter-final against Kei Nishikori that something wasn't right," said Murray.

"I'd had issues with my hip for a very long time and lost multiple matches from two sets to one up.

"As the longer matches were going on I was starting to have issues. Yeah, I remember during that match, the fifth set, feeling I was unable to move.

Also See:

"I couldn't sleep that night I was in so much pain. And yeah, my hip never recovered. It was a shame."

But the 37-year-old is looking forward to renewing his rivalry with the Swiss, adding: "It's a good match for both of us. A pleasure to get to play against him in another slam."

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Highlights as Murray went down to defeat against Tomas Machac at the Miami Open

Murray is now fit again after an ankle injury suffered at the Miami Open and he has initially feared he would be out for "10-12 weeks" but returned ahead of time at an ATP Challenger event in Bordeaux.

"Initially I was expecting to miss the French and not play any clay at all," he said. "So to be here and feeling pretty healthy, and the ankle being good, is a huge bonus.

"I was surprised how I was during the rehab - I felt really really motivated. I worked extremely hard every single day with my team and physio, there were no breaks or holidays to feel sorry for myself. I just did the work."

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

The Sky Sports tennis team break down why Murray decided to change his racket at such a late point in his career

Murray has made a surprise late-career decision to switch his racket, changing the HEAD one he has used since the start for one made by Yonex.

"Tennis is a strange sport for that, very few players make changes to their equipment," explained the Scot.

"I've been on the Tour for 20-odd years and like most industries things change and it was something I wanted to try.

"I don't want to finish my career thinking should I have given it a go to see if that could potentially have helped me, and I enjoyed the process, I tried lots of rackets.

"It was something to keep me occupied during the rehab and I found a racket I really liked. I think it was the right thing for me to try at this stage."

What's coming up on Sky Sports Tennis?

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Find out all the ways to watch tennis on Sky Sports, including the US Open, ATP and WTA tours

In the run-up to the third Grand Slam of 2024 - at Wimbledon - you can watch all of the biggest tennis stars in action live on Sky Sports as they compete across the grass-court season.

  • Stuttgart Open (ATP 250 with Murray in action) - June 10-16
  • Rosmalen Open (ATP/WTA 250) - June 10-16

Watch the WTA and ATP Tours throughout 2024 on Sky Sports Tennis. Stream Sky Sports Tennis and more with a NOW Sports Month Membership. No contract, cancel anytime.

Around Sky