Andy Murray has revealed that Wimbledon’s organisers ignored his repeated requests not to play the final match of the day under the centre court roof during this year’s Championships.
Murray suffered a second round exit to Stefanos Tsitsipas, with the Greek fifth seed coming back from two sets to one down to knock out the two-time former winner after it carried over to a second day.
The 36-year-old Scot had been leading the match when a decision was made to postpone until the next day with the 11pm curfew approaching.
And Murray appeared fatigued when the encounter resumed, allowing Tsitsipas to advance in five sets.
The three-time grand slam champion believes that the centre court roof is now used too often to allow matches to continue until later into the evening, and should be reserved only for when it rains.
“I had multiple conversations before the start of the tournament and asked not to play the third match every single day because that’s what is going to happen with the 1.30 start and the breaks in between the matches,” Murray explained ahead of his first match at the US Open in New York.
“The roof, in my opinion, was there for when it rains – that there is always matches that can go on for the fans and for TV and everything and it’s great.
“It feels like it’s getting used now for darkness to play matches later in the evening and when you get that third slot you have no way of practising on an indoor grass court. It’s not possible.
“You spend your whole time preparing for Wimbledon – I skipped the French Open to prepare to play my best tennis at Wimbledon – but then you’re playing every match under different conditions than what you’re preparing for.”
But first the 2012 Flushing Meadows champion must overcome France’s world number 72 Corentin Moutet.
“I’ve not played against him, but I practised with him once, he’s an unbelievably talented guy,” added Murray.
“He’s not the biggest, he tends to play quite long points but he’s got tons of variety and good hands at the net. He can be a bit volatile at times but yeah, a good challenge for me, very different to how most players play in the draw.
“A lot of the game nowadays is based on power and serves and he’s the opposite really. A good test for me.”
Murray is one of six Brits in the first round on Tuesday, with Cameron Norrie, Dan Evans, Jack Draper, Katie Boulter and Jodie Burrage also in action.
With additional reporting from PA