At the pre-tournament Press conference for the first Grand Slam of the year, an emotional Murray revealed his retirement plans. The five-time Australian Open finalist aims to call it a day on home turf at the Wimbledon this year, Tennis Australia has reported on the official Australian Open website.
Murray is placed fourth in the all-time career prize money on the ATP Tour. In the professional career spanning 13 years, ever since he turned pro in 2005 at the age of 18, the 6 feet three inch tall Briton has accumulated $60.93 million in prize money. Only Roger Federer ($117.51 mn), Novak Djokovic ($ 115.31 mn) and Rafael Nadal ($ 102.33 mn) are ahead of him.
Prize money contributed to around $ 5 million to his annual earnings of around $ 15 million, the majority share coming from brand endorsements. Brands such as Under Armour, Standard Life, Head and Rado and Jaguar are on his sponsors roaster.
The 31-year-old has struggled to regain his staggering form after a surgery on his hip back in January last year. The illustrious career is studded with three Grand Slam singles crowns, 45 career titles and two Olympic golds.
“I’ve been in a lot of pain for about 20 months now. I’ve tried everything I could to get my hip feeling better. It hasn’t helped loads, I’m in a better place than I was six months ago, but I’m still in a lot of pain. It’s been tough,” Murray said at the Press conference.
Murray, however, confirmed that he will be at the Melbourne Park court next week in spite of his physical discomfort. “I’m going to play,” he said. “I can still play to a level, but not to a level that I’m happy at, but also it’s not just that. The pain is too much really. I don’t want to continue playing that way.
“In the middle of my training block back in December I spoke to my team, I told them that I can’t keep doing this, that I needed an end point, because I can’t keep playing with no idea when the pain will stop.”
“I told them (my team) that I’ll try and get through this until Wimbledon. That’s where I would like to stop playing, but I’m also not certain I’m able to do that,” admitted Murray, who guided Team GB to Davis Cup glory in 2015.
“I think there is a chance of that for sure because I’m not sure I’m able to play through the pain for another four or five months,” the former world No.1 added when asked if it will be his final Wimbledon.
“I have the option to have another operation, which is a little bit more severe than I’ve had before, which is having my hip resurfaced. It would allow me to have a better quality of life, to be free of pain.
“That’s something I’m seriously considering right now, to then come back to competing, but there is obviously no guarantee with that.
“The reason to have that operation is not to return to professional sport, it’s just for a better quality of life.”