Sports Tennis

Murray leaves Rome following ‘patchy’ match against Fognini

The former world number one’s loss to Fabio Fognini in the Italian Open’s opening round on Wednesday hurt his chances of earning a French Open seed.

Murray lost to Fognini 6-4 4-6 6-4 just days after taking home the second-tier Aix-en-Provence Challenger Tour title, his first since 2019 and first on clay since 2016. Murray’s play on clay was once again erratic.

It had been a “pretty patchy match” against the Italian, according to Murray, who was aiming to raise his world ranking with a strong showing in Rome and get seeded for Roland Garros.

“There was some good stuff in there, but also some pretty average stuff,” he was quoted as saying by The Guardian. “He played well in the third set. My level was OK, but he played really well in the third.”


Murray, a three-time Grand Slam winner who also lost early matches in Monte Carlo and Madrid, has not participated in Roland Garros since 2020 as a result of two hip surgeries.

He has previously chosen to forgo competitions during the claycourt season in order to concentrate on the grasscourt swing leading up to Wimbledon.

Before next week, Murray said he would talk with his team whether to accept a wild card into another event because he wasn’t sure what he would do next.

“I’d still like to play but we did agree that we would talk and make a decision as a team after Rome,” he added.


“That is what I wanted, to see how my game felt, how I was playing and physically how I was doing in some of the longer matches before making a definitive call on it.

“We’ll have those discussions in the next few days.”

The French Open, the second Grand Slam of the season, begins on May 28.

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