Andy Murray says being at the Rome Masters has been really positive for his development and in assessing where he is on his comeback.
Murray initially had no intentions of competing in Rome, and attended only to play scheduled practice sessions with some of the world’s best players including Novak Djokovic and Diego Schwartzman.
However, a late withdrawal in the doubles event meant that he and fellow Brit Liam Broady were given the opportunity to compete and the pair jumped at the chance.
Winning a third set tie-breaker to secure a win in the first round, they lost in the second to eighth seeds Krawietz and Tecau, but Murray says the week has been just what he needed to assess his current fitness.
“It was good to get a couple of matches for both of us after Liam didn’t get into qualifying here and then obviously I was here practising but I knew as the week went on it was going to be a little bit harder to get match practice because most of the guys who lost would have been leaving,” Murray told the PA news agency.
“Practise has been good. Today didn’t feel that great on the court, I didn’t play that well in comparison to yesterday. The other guys served well, which made it difficult.
“But it was good to feel what it was like in match conditions again after quite a long period for me.
“I got four practises with top-20 players, which is good. If we hadn’t got into the doubles I maybe would have got one more before heading off but I got a couple of matches instead,” said Murray.
The former British number one and three-time Grand Slam champion is currently lined up to play the French Open qualifiers, but is hoping to get a wild card instead.
He is expected to play one more tournament before Roland Garros begins and he says Rome has been good preparation.
“It was positive, I’m happy I came over here, learned a bit about my game and where I’m at,” said Murray.
“It’s totally different training conditions over here and being around the tournament like this than it is at home so (I’m) glad we came to do it.”
For more exclusive content from Tennisbuzz, including news, features, trivia, promotions and more, please be sure to sign up for our newsletter below or via our home page.
Why not test your tennis knowledge by tackling one of our fiendish quizzes too?