• Wimbledon

Murray: Age no barrier to grand slam glory

ESPN staff
June 25, 2012
Andy Murray is searching for that elusive grand slam title © Getty Images

ESPN will be providing extensive coverage of Wimbledon in association with Rolex, with live scores, commentary and analysis and you can follow it all with our live scorecentre

Andy Murray says there is no hurry to break his grand slam duck, insisting age will not be a barrier as he goes in search of a first major title.

Murray, 25, has reached a grand slam final on three occasions (at the US Open in 2008 and Australian Open two years running from 2010), finishing as runner-up every time.

With Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal seemingly having a hold on the slam trophies at present, and the fact 16-time grand slam champion Roger Federer is still a force of the men's game, Murray's chances of winning one of the sport's biggest prizes appears slim.

Time may be against Murray too: there are only four players older than the Scot to have become first-time slam winners since 2000 - Gaston Gaudio, Albert Costa, Thomas Johansson and Goran Ivanisevic, who won Wimbledon as a wildcard in 2001 aged 29.

Despite the unfavourable statistics, Murray believes the modern-day player reaches his peak at a later stage than years gone by, giving him hope that he still has plenty of time in which to triumph at one of the four slams.

"I just play, and I also think tennis has changed a lot. I know a lot about the history of the game and it has completely changed," he said.

"When I first made it into the top 10 there was me, Djokovic, Nadal, who were all 18 or 19 years old. Now there are maybe two or three guys under 20 in the top 100. The average age of the top players is much, much older than it used to be because the game has become much more physical.

"It has changed a lot so whereas before guys were playing their best tennis when they were younger, I think it is starting to happen now that guys are playing their best when they're older."

Meanwhile, Murray, who "doesn't see anyone breaking through and winning the [Wimbledon] title out of nowhere", says the draw at SW19 has not been kind to him, although he made it clear he is not looking past first-round opponent Nikolay Davydenko.

He said: "It's always a tough match when you play against big servers [Ivo Karlovic, Kevin Anderson and Milos Raonic are all potential future opponents]. I've had a good record against them in the past but it can be quite mentally challenging playing against them because you can't really lose focus on your own serve, even if it's just for a few points.

"It can be tough to break them. Big servers usually play better when they're ahead, as well. But it would be stupid for me to look past Davydenko. Although I'm sure many people will, I won't be making that mistake."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.