• ATP Tour

Becker: Murray wise to miss French Open

ESPN staff
May 22, 2013

Former world No. 1 and six-time grand slam singles champion Boris Becker believes Andy Murray made the correct decision to pull out of the upcoming French Open.

The British No. 1 withdrew from the Roland Garros tournament, the second slam of the season, on Tuesday citing a lower back injury which caused him to pull out of the recent Internazionali BNL d'Italia in Rome.

Despite the Scot admitting it was a "really tough decision" to pull out of the Paris event, Becker insists that if world No. 2 Murray is not fit enough to compete then there was no option but to withdraw.

"I've seen him in Rome retiring and I've seen him struggle, physically and mentally so I think it is a wise decision for him to pull out if he is not feeling well," Becker told ESPN.co.uk. "He has the big one, Wimbledon, on his mind.

"He is after all, the Olympic gold medal winner - where he played at Wimbledon - and obviously he was the finalist last year and I think that is the one tournament that he wants to win the most all year.

"If he is not physically able at the moment then he should get in shape, play a good Queen's Club tournament as a warm-up and get ready for Wimbledon. It's never good to miss a slam, it's never good to pull out of a tournament but if you're physically not good enough then there's no option."

Becker, who had to withdraw from Wimbledon in 1996 after suffering an injury in the third round, believes that absence through injury will give Murray a chance to reassess his game and contemplate the season so far.

"Time out with injuries is not always bad," Becker added. "It puts things in perspective. Maybe you've had aches and pains for a while and you just needed a break to recover.

"It can be good for your tennis because you can improve on a few things where you didn't have the time to before. You refresh a little bit, you take note of how your year has been so far. You recover and you don't have to think about it grinding on a clay court. It takes its toll on the mind.

"Andy is an emotional player and he needs to be ready and fresh mentally in order to play his best tennis."

The German, who became the youngest ever Wimbledon singles champion in 1985 when winning the tournament aged 17, believes that time will tell as to whether the 26-year-old US Open champion made the correct call.

"At the end of the day, it may be smart when Wimbledon comes around and it may be smart come the end of the year. Then we know whether the decision was a good one.

"Having said that, pulling out of a slam is never good."

Boris Becker is the new ambassador of online betting company Youwin.com, who are offering a special 'Becker Cash Back' bet on the Champions League final. For more information and a full list of odds, visit youwin.com

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