After two hip surgeries and several seasons of comeback fits and starts, Andy Murray knows exactly some of the challenges awaiting Roger Federer as the Swiss makes a return to tennis next week.
While former No. 1 Murray rests after losing to Andrey Rublev in the Rotterdam second round, Federer will be leaving his base in Dubai to play at next week’s ATP event in Doha.
it will be the first time on a match court for the 39-year-old Swiss since his Australian Open appearance of 14 months ago.
The Swiss then missed the rest of the COVID season after a pair of knee procedures and rehab starting in the autumn.
Murray knows all the agonies of a comeback after his own pair of hip surgeries – and he feels that Federer has more than a fighting chance of a solid return to competition.
“I know that Roger is coming back because he loves this sport, as I do, and I am convinced that he is working very hard to be able to compete at the best level,” he said in Rotterdam.
“If you are physically fit, it is so incredibly good to return to the elite.
“And although it will not be found 100 per cent, has so much talent that enough will to beat most players. I’m sure he’ll be fine ,”
As for his own performance in a straight-sets loss to Russian teenager Rublev, the 33-year-old Murray remains optimistic.
He told the BBC: “I want to continue playing at a level that allows me to compete against top-10 players, They are the ones that help me the most to improve.
“Against Rublev I did positive things in the first set, but at the decisive moment I made childish mistakes.
“I’m not used to it. to that; when it happens to me I find it hard to stay positive and stay focused.”
Murray is due to play this month in Dubai and then travel to Miami.