Andy Murray will step up his latest return from injury when he travels to Italy on Saturday to practice with Novak Djokovic ahead of next week’s Rome Masters.
The former world number one has not featured on tour since March after he withdrew from the Miami Open with a groin issue.
The three-time Grand Slam champion has had a number of scans on the problem, but he now has the green-light to step up his French Open preparations after they failed to reveal anything serious.
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Murray will travel to the Italian capital this weekend and is set for a series of practice sessions prior to the Masters 1000 tournament, with his main target being Roland Garros which starts on May 30.
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“I want to get out there to be around the top players and top tournaments,” he said.
On Sunday I’ve got a court booked with (Diego) Schwartzman and then Novak (Djokovic) in the afternoon. I want to play against the highest-level players possible because I think that will help me improve my game quicker.”
“It’s difficult for me to look too far into the future,” he continued.
“I need to try and find a way of staying on the match court for longer. It has been extremely frustrating. When I had the operation on the hip I knew it was going to be unbelievably challenging. It just feels there are a couple of things that have happened this year which have been very unfortunate, that have been hard to take.
“But I didn’t expect it to be easy. I’m trying to do something that has not been done before.”
Murray has also revealed that he has added Mark Petchey to his coaching set up. The former GB player turned media pundit was Murray’s coach when he first broke into the top 50 over 15 years ago and he is expected to join Jamie Delgado to help with some of his duties.
Murray said: “Over the last few years my team and I have spent a lot of time together, and there have been a lot of difficult moments because of what’s happened with the injuries and uncertainty.
“I felt it would be good to have a fresh voice some weeks. Obviously I did a lot of work with Petch when I was younger. I thought he was a very good coach and because of his TV work he is very current with his knowledge.
“Having someone extra with all the quarantine situations that can come up makes sense. I know him really well, so we are looking at doing something longer term, but nothing has been agreed at this point.”
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