How Andy Murray Can Get Back on Track
There is no point dwelling on the past for Andy Murray, especially with so much ahead of him to look forward to.
After losing an emotional match to Roger Federer at Wimbledon, Murray needs to use that as a learning experience for what lies ahead.
There are still the Olympics and the U.S. Open left to finish off the season, and these are important competitions to do well in heading into next year.
Andy Murray needs to perform well to get back on track.
If the final part of the season does not go well, then all his hard work and preparation to win a Wimbledon title will have gone down the drain.
So here are five things gained from his performances this year that Andy Murray can use to get his game back on track.
Use the Crowd
If there is a time for Andy Murray to finally become a personable athlete, then this is it.
After showing a side of himself very rarely seen at Wimbledon this year, Murray has shown he is worth cheering for. Displaying his emotions more regularly might gain him more supporters—other than English ones.
Murray feels quite different now after the support he began to receive—including that from random people in the street—after his loss to Federer, reports Cam Cole of Post Media News (via the Edmonton Journal).
It was overwhelming. I’m not used to that. I understand that sometimes in the past, it wasn’t always that easy to get behind me because on the court I didn’t look particularly happy. But I think during Wimbledon, the buildup to the tournament, I just felt different on the court. I felt like I’d grown up a bit. I felt like my demeanor was better.
If Murray gets the crowd on his side, he then may be able to use that support for extra motivation. If he shows that he is trying and the effort is there, fans will want him to win—especially the hometown crowd at London's Olympic Games.
Control His Emotions
Hopefully, Andy Murray has been able to learn just how big of a role emotions play in sport.
If Murray wants to be able to get back to where his game was—and should be—he will need to make sure that his head is always in the game. He showed good poise at Wimbledon, even when the pressure was at its all-time high.
That same pressure will be on him every match in London, and he will be expected to keep his cool. Not playing smart and letting his emotions take over the game will never do him any good.
Murray has said that he feels like he has grown since his last tournament, and that seems like a good sign. A good performance at the Olympics—one that is calm, cool and collected—will benefit Murray for many years to come.
He is a talented player, and being able to harness that talent while on the court is very important. Just playing the game of tennis, and nothing else, will be a key for Murray to get back to business.
Use His Serve
Andy Murray says that his serve is his best shot. Being able to control it factors a lot into his game.
If a player knows going into a match that his best shot is working, then he will play better. However, if he comes into the match knowing that that same shot is not working so well, his on-court confidence will be affected.
Murray needs to make sure he is comfortable with his serve. It seems like his serve has been good of late, which is one of the main reasons he was able to go deep at Wimbledon, as he was second in total aces for the tournament.
But in order for him to get back on track, even after a strong Wimbledon, he needs to make sure that his serve is lights-out, game in and game out.
For the rest of the year Murray has to make sure that his serve is his best weapon. If it is not, then he will struggle against opponents and will always have to battle from behind, which is something he can not afford to be doing every match.
Strong Play in London
If there is one thing that Andy Murray could do to get back on track, it is to have a strong performance at the 2012 London Olympic Games.
Obviously, he gets the opportunity to play in his home country, but it is also the Olympics. There is nothing bigger than being able to represent your country in the sport you love.
This was something that Murray did not fully understand in his first go-around with the Olympics, but that has changed this time, reports Cam Cole of Post Media News (via the Edmonton Journal).
I was disappointed with the way I played in Beijing. I didn’t understand what the Olympics meant to me, it was my first time there and I was so excited to be there. I went to the opening ceremony and I was trying to watch other sports because I had never experienced it before and maybe didn’t focus as hard on myself and my event.
Murray needs to make the most of this Olympic opportunity in order to have some positive momentum going into the rest of this season and next.
Finish the Year Strong
If Andy Murray wants to get everything back on track, then there is nothing more important than finishing the year strong. Not only will that make up for a disappointing season thus far, but it will also give him something positive to dwell on during the offseason.
There is still plenty of time left to salvage a season that has not been the best for Murray. He has had a couple of good performances, but also a lot of bad ones. With the Olympics and the U.S. Open still left, the time is right for Murray to make a splash.
He will also be able to put himself into a good position next year if he is able to finish off this one strong. Playing well and possibly winning another tournament or two before the end of the year means Murray will have extra confidence.
He will have something to train for—which is a huge motivator—if he can manage a couple good performances in the season's final tournaments.
Some positive outcomes will only serve him well for next season.