The bad news keeps coming for Andy Murray.
The former World No.1 shocked the tennis world on Friday when he announced he’ll be retiring in 2019.
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He broke down in tears as he confirmed the Australian Open would be his last, but was hopeful he’d be able to end his career in front of his home crowd at Wimbledon in July.
However the surgeon who repaired Murray’s dodgy hip has delivered a heartbreaking blow to that plan.
The doctor who conducted the surgery says playing up until Wimbledon will be hugely challenging for Murray.
“I don’t think it is impossible, but it will be very difficult,” Dr John O’Donnell told BBC Radio.
“He enjoys the Australian Open, and has been very keen to play, but Wimbledon is the high point for him.
“Ideally he would want to play there, but I imagine once you make the decision that you are going to stop it must get very difficult to keep going with the rehab, never-ending exercising, and putting up with the pain.
“Once you see the end in sight, I guess it would be harder to get motivated.
“Andy has tried really hard and explored every option that has any real possibility of being helpful.
“Realistically I don’t think there is anywhere else to go to preserve his hip and get it better so he can continue to play. That won’t happen now.”
Nevertheless, the All England Club plan to honour Murray with a statue, Wimbledon chief executive Richard Lewis has revealed.
The 31-year-old’s 2012 triumph at the US Open made him the first British male to claim a major title since 1936 winner Fred Perry, who was celebrated with a statue at the All England Club in 1984.
Murray’s status in British tennis will see him commemorated in the same way, with Lewis confirming there have long been plans to mark the end of his playing career.
Asked about the possibility of a statue for Murray when appearing on BBC Radio, Lewis said: “For sure. I don’t think there’s any doubt about that.
“We always felt that when Andy retired, that would be the appropriate time to recognise his extraordinary career. I am sure something like that will be done.
“But meanwhile, down at the club, he is seen as a highly respected person both on and off the court. We are very fond of him and he is a great person to have around the club.”
Murray faces Roberto Bautista Agut in the first round in Melbourne on Monday.