Andy Murray holds talks to make final French Open decision after Rome loss

Andy Murray is set to make his final decision on playing the French Open after suffering an early exit in Rome. The world No 42 crashed out to Fabio Fognini 6-4 4-6 6-4 in the opening round on Wednesday. He had been hoping to play Roland Garros again but revealed after the match that he would be holding talks with his team before committing.

Murray has been open about his hopes of playing this year’s French Open. The 35-year-old first cast doubt after his opening-round loss in Monte Carlo, where he considered skipping the rest of the clay season altogether.

After another first-round defeat in Madrid, the Brit was in better spirits as he admitted he wanted to play the clay-court Major while he still could. But it appears that a final decision is yet to be made, with Murray now revealing that he would be holding talks with his team after losing in Rome.

The former world No 1 had a positive run at last week’s Aix-en-Provence Challenger, taking a wildcard to get some wins on the dirt and ending up as the champion. But he couldn’t translate the form into Rome and lost to Fognini, and is now set to make his French Open decision.

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“I’d still like to play but we did agree that we’d talk and make a decision as a team after Rome,” he told The Guardian after the match, admitting that his Roland Garros participation was still up in the air. Murray said he and his team would hold talks before making a call, having previously outlined Rome as the last tournament to help him give a judgement.

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.”

A former champion in Rome, Murray didn’t appear too downbeat about his three-set loss to his former top 10 rival. “It was a pretty patchy match,” he said of the almost three-hour battle. “There was some good stuff in there but also some pretty average stuff. He played very well in the third set. My level was OK in the third, but he played really well in the third.”

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Before the French Open begins on May 29, Murray is also set to play one more event. The former world No 1 previously signed up for next week’s Bordeaux Challenger and will have the opportunity to get some more matches under his belt ahead of a potential return to Roland Garros.

Murray has competed at the French Open just once since 2017, playing the postponed edition in October 2020 and crashing out to Stan Wawrinka in the first round. It was a tough draw for the Brit, who also faced Wawrinka in his last match on the Parisian clay – the 2017 semi-final.

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