Australian Open 2013: What Victory in Final Would Mean for Murray's Career

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Australian Open 2013: What Victory in Final Would Mean for Murray's Career
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Andy Murray is one win away from capturing his second career Grand Slam title and his first at the Australian Open, but it won't be easy with Novak Djokovic standing in his way.

These two squared off in the final of last year's U.S. Open with Murray coming out on top. It was the Scot's first career Grand Slam victory and a strong finish to what was a sensational year.

Murray also topped Roger Federer in London to take home a gold medal.

Clearly, Murray is quickly rising to the top of the sport, but he hasn't gotten there just yet.

What Murray needs is another Grand Slam victory under his belt before he can be placed among the best in the men's game. Sure, he is right there as we speak, but a second major title would no doubt go a long way for Murray's career.

Winning one Grand Slam can be seen as a fluke, but a second would secure Murray's place in tennis for good—especially since it would be against Djokovic.

It would also be Murray's second consecutive major victory over Djokovic, and while I'm not ready to say Murray is better than Djoker, the Scot's victory would warrant at least the start of such a conversation.

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Many avid tennis fans would say that Djoker is the best hard-court player on the planet without even thinking twice about it, and by most standards, they are absolutely correct.

However, when looking at Murray and Djokovic's history against one another, they are nearly dead even on the surface. In 13 career matches on a hard court, Djoker has a slight advantage over Murray, 7-6.

Funny how that stat is often overlooked when discussing the best hard-court players in the world.

Another victory for Murray at the Aussie Open would make it a 7-7 tie, thus thrusting Murray directly into the conversation as an elite hard-court player the likes of Djokovic. A loss would keep Djokovic out in front and put Murray out of the discussion for the foreseeable future.

It has taken Murray a while to get to where he is today, but all that hard work is finally paying off and a win over Djokovic would solidify his place in tennis.

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