Lendl backs Andy Murray to achieve ‘amazing things’ with Rafael Nadal comparison

Ivan Lendl thinks Rafael Nadal's Australian Open win is proof that Andy Murray still has what it takes to achieve "amazing things" in his career.

Murray has reappointed the Czech legend for a third stint as his coach, as he bids to start challenging again in Grand Slam events. The 34-year-old has made a remarkable recovery from his second bout of hip surgery in 2018 to return to competitive tennis, and has shown glimpses of his former self in the past 12 months.

In January, he reached a first ATP final since 2018 when he was runner-up in the Sydney Tennis Classic, falling at the final hurdle to Russian player Aslan Karatsev. However, his Australian Open ended at the second round stage when he was beaten in straight sets by Taro Daniel.

Afterwards, he admitted that the prospect of early exits from the Grand Slam events didn't 'excite' him, seemingly again casting doubt on his future in the sport. However, reuniting with the coach who oversaw him winning a US Open, two Wimbledon titles, and two Olympic Gold medals has been viewed as a statement of intent.

And Lendl, 60, thinks Nadal's incredible renaissance at Melbourne Park shows what the long dubbed 'big four' of the Spaniard, Murray, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic can still achieve.

“All these guys have incredible determination,” Lendl, 60, said. “They are just like bulldogs and they want to do things because it hasn't been done before."

"If they set their mind to it, and they all do, then they can achieve amazing things. If I read it correctly, Rafa said [in November] he wasn't even sure he's going to be able to play again.

"He goes and wins the Australian Open, so, yes, these guys can do it.” Lendl also suggested that if Murray was to start upsetting the odds again, then his best chance will come at SW19.

"I would say grass is probably Andy's best surface," he added. "A lot of the players, it's their worst surface. That would obviously increase his chances."

Following his recent defeat to Daniil Medvedev at the Miami Open, Murray revealed that he and Lendl faced a critical period together. “My level of tennis is obviously not right now where it needs to be to win matches like that," he admitted.

“I think [Lendl will bring] some clarity over the right way to play and the right way to practice. I don’t feel I have been practising the right things for 18 months or so and it is difficult to undo that in the space of a few weeks.

“Hence that is one of the reasons I am taking a big period of training to try to change some of those things and get my game into a place where it’s more competitive against the top players again.”

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