Oct/19

7

Andy Murray Is the GECPAT

What Andy Murray has done since his return to the tour this summer starting with playing doubles with Feliciano Lopez at the Queens Club event to now playing and winning singles matches makes him the GECPAT–Greatest Ever Comeback Player of All Time.

I have had the surgery Murray had–a hip resurfacing where a metal ball is put into your hip to eradicate arthritis pain and cartilage loss–and the way Murray is moving and competing on the court a mere six months after his surgery is just mind-blowing. Today at the Shanghai Open he came back to defeat Juan Ignacios Londero after dropping the first set. The 32-year-old Murray is ranked no. 289, but in the past two weeks he’s given De Minaur a tough battle, and revenged a loss against Sandgren and beaten Berrettini, Norrie and Londero.

Miraculously, the former no. 1 doesn’t look like he’s lost a step and his competitive verve is seemingly as strong as ever. Equally miraculous, Murray seems to have blunted a lot of his wayward back-biting behavior towards himself and his coaches. Murray has a long way to go, but if he’s able to get back within the top-30 again it will be nothing short of miraculous too.

Scoop’s book Facing Andy Murray is available at amazon for $9.99.

36 comments

  • Andrew Miller · October 7, 2019 at 3:15 pm

    Maybe big four is just better. They can be handicapped and still win.

  • Hartt · October 7, 2019 at 4:52 pm

    Andy’s fans are so excited to have him back playing competitive tennis. Things looked pretty dark at the beginning of the year. The Tour just did not seem the same without him, crabbiness and all.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 7, 2019 at 6:46 pm

    The greatest ever comeback of all time is Brian Baker, six years out of action with assorted injuries. Tommy Haas overcoming ten surgeries is also up there. As is Christian Harrison’s nine or ten surgeries. And Alex Bogomolov returning after coaching in NY (commuting from central NJ by train) and achieving his career high best ranking. Murray’s comeback is nice but it pales in comparison to these examples of dedication and perseverance.

  • Dan Markowitz · October 7, 2019 at 7:52 pm

    Yes, but all of the players you mention with the exception of Haas pale drastically to what Murray is coming back to. I mean throw Christian Harry out right away. I mean I know he had a lot of injuries, but what did he come back to? A top 200 ranking?

    Baker and Bogomolov, both nice players, but it’s not really a comeback if you didn’t achieve high results in the first place. I’d certainly credit Cjijsters and Serena’s comebacks much more than even Murray, but they had babies, Murray had a piece of metal put into his body. It’s really amazing he’s not limping or he can play back to back weeks on hard courts like he’s doing now.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 7, 2019 at 8:14 pm

    Muster mangled knee, to world no. 1 is high on the list. Wait. The gecoat is Jennifer Capriati.

  • Andrew Miller · October 7, 2019 at 8:38 pm

    Muster. But the Murray comeback is interesting. I like how Nadal says if he wasn’t injured he’d have twice as many slams, but I don’t agree. A person can’t play like Nadal without being injured. The price of his epic victories and slam total is the injury of his knees and other body parts. If Nadal wasn’t injured and didn’t injure himself often he wouldn’t be Nadal.

  • Andrew Miller · October 7, 2019 at 8:41 pm

    From injury, yeah Murray’s up there.

    I’m still surprised that Berretini could beat him. I still think that’s because there’s the top four guys plus Wawrinka, possibly Medvedev now, and then there’s everyone else.

  • Dan Markowitz · October 7, 2019 at 9:00 pm

    Wawrinka, he’s still a nice player, but top 5? No way. Murray you can’t refer to anymore as one of the Big 4. That has shipped has sailed, now if he’s able to retrieve his prior form and ranking at 32, it would be the Greatest Comeback ever. Muster certainly, grave injury. Capriati great comeback, but she didn’t come back from an injury. She came back from burnout and possible mental breakdown. Agassi certainly is up there with the greatest comebacks ever too. You can put Spadea in there too because he didn’t come back from injury, but he nevertheless made a remarkable turnaround.

    Maybe there should be a distinction. There are comebacks from injury, giving birth and burnout and there are comebacks from a major drop in form.

  • Andrew Miller · October 7, 2019 at 10:19 pm

    Spadea made a wonderful comeback. One of most noteable.

  • Andrew Miller · October 7, 2019 at 10:20 pm

    Thought Wawrinka still had it, but probably right. It’s possibly over for Stanimal.

  • Jon King · October 7, 2019 at 10:57 pm

    Two factors about the procedure Murray had is the specific doctor and how fast things advance in ortho medicine. A handful of surgeons just have better results than all the rest, Murray likely had one of the best docs. The other thing is specialists are always communicating and improving on procedures.

    So if someone had a hip resurfacing 3-4-5 years ago, chances are the best doctors in the field have found a few things that work better in that time frame and have tweaked their procedures.

  • Andrew Miller · October 7, 2019 at 11:13 pm

    Saw the Shanghai highlights. What a stadium. Has TP been to the stadium? Wow,that must be one of the more impressive venues. My goodness.

    Murray really did play with fire. I like seeing the bearded Murray showing he has more in the tank. Yes it would be special for him to break back to top 30. He almost looks like a grizzled baseball player out there, or a vet footballer who still has the magic. I like this Murray. Funny how that works. The adversity makes them heroes.

    Shapovalov looked very good. Really closing in on the net well. He has one of the best games every for a lefty. He reminds me a little of Leconte, a little of Petr Korda. Special game aware lucky to have him on tour. That was nice of Tiafoe to congratulate him. Sometimes the camaraderie on tour is enjoyable to see. No frigid handshake here

    Fognini played some great ball in beating Querrey.

    And Monfils, always enjoyable. He will be one of the fans favorite players of all-time. He should be. Like Svito once Monfils gets so far in a tournament his objective changes, he isn’t interested in winning! But he’s a joy to watch.

  • catherine · October 8, 2019 at 2:18 am

    Andrew – saw your note on Monfils after I’d watched the complete IW sf match between Andreescu and Svitolina and what you say about Elena is so true. She had the match and then something happened and Bianca slipped throgh the door – as if she didn’t want to win, or isn’t interested in winning or is in a weird way, afraid to. Don’t think Monfils is afraid, he just likes playing but winning the whole thing is a different matter.

  • Hartt · October 8, 2019 at 5:56 am

    Bublik retired during the 2nd set rain delay when he was losing to Félix 0-4, so we will get the much-anticipated FAA vs Tsitsipas match.

  • Andrew Miller · October 8, 2019 at 8:43 am

    Monfils, didn’t realize how enjoyable it is to watch the guy play until his French Open 2009 match with Federer. Something I don’t say and will try to more often, there aren’t just a few champions and everyone else on tour. Enjoy Monfils while everyone can! He brings the show and the theatrics and it’s without any of the obnoxiousness of some other players that turn tennis into a theatre. For the most part he’s got the French flair, where what’s important is that the audience has a good time, not who is claiming what trophy. Unique.

    For what it’s worth I also like the Svito-Monfils pairing. It’s funny but fun.

  • Andrew Miller · October 8, 2019 at 9:03 am

    Maybe Svito is happy with her results, she should be. The Svito press conferences at the US open were mostly Svito beaming, and I can’t imagine they don’t leave everyone in the room feeling a little better, with elevated spirits.

    Svito sometimes comes off as pretty normal. As in not wacko. She’s like yeah US open semifinals this is great I love NY. Shouldn’t everyone say that?

  • catherine · October 8, 2019 at 9:30 am

    Yes, but she should be winning tournaments now and then, not feeling good about losing. Unless she’s happy with that, as you say.

  • Andrew Miller · October 8, 2019 at 9:32 am

    Good stuff in Shanghai. That’s what I call a draw. Already interesting as of round one, two. You win a first round match and it’s like another tournament’s semifinals.

  • Andrew Miller · October 8, 2019 at 9:34 am

    Svito probably wants to make the year end finals? She’s on the borderline for the final spot but may get in anyways if someone else calls it a year and withdraws. You know cough cough toenail issue whatever.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 8, 2019 at 10:12 am

    Monfils is the Harlem Globetrotters on a tennis court. He is a major attraction even if he doesn’t win a major or get to a final. Even if there is a predictable ceiling to how far he can go in a major or 1000, he is still one of the best tickets in sports, let alone tennis. He is cheered all over the world, never forget the time the US Open fans cheered for Monfils to beat Isner about four years ago. That was frustrating and humiliating for Isner but it shows the massive appeal of Monfils more than being a knock on Isner.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 8, 2019 at 10:14 am

    One wonders if Svitolina just wants to post updates to gems life more than anything else.

  • Hartt · October 8, 2019 at 10:20 am

    Regarding Gauff getting the LL spot after Sakkari withdrew, someone posted that there is a joke that Sakkari got a “disappearance fee.”

  • catherine · October 8, 2019 at 10:28 am

    That is very funny Hartt 🙂

    Everyone knows Gauff is getting favoured treatment. She had this big welcome in Linz as well – flowers and everything.

  • Hartt · October 8, 2019 at 10:31 am

    There are 4 Wangs playing in Tianjin, and 2 have first names beginning with X!

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 8, 2019 at 10:37 am

    Do you know in boxing there have been some total fraud champions, some even exist as we speak, just about their entire careers were protected and rigged all the way to the world title and even beyond by paying off all the opponents to dive or lose or play soft? Yes, it has happened several times. The right management chooses the boxer who has some decent talent and then manufactures him into a money making franchise. The sanctioning bodies are also paid off. I wonder if they can apply this “create a money making but fraud champion” in tennis too. Maybe we will find out soon 🙂

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 8, 2019 at 10:38 am

    That would be Xinyu and Xiyu Wang, two good prospects.

  • Andrew Miller · October 8, 2019 at 10:44 am

    Wow Catherine called it, Linz LL Gauff gets in. Man these tournaments are desperate. And I like Gauff!

    I was going to talk about the Shanghai results. But no need. Surprises to me, Isner d. De Minaur, whose amazing form post US Open with his epic win two weeks ago seemed to drain him. He’s lost early two weeks in a row. Rublev d. Coric. Medvedev won easy.

    A lot of good matches. Most of them are at least a regular tournament quarterfinal in the first round.

  • Andrew Miller · October 8, 2019 at 10:46 am

    Go Monfils! Yeah he is fantastic. I will be sad when he retires.

  • Dan Markowitz · October 8, 2019 at 10:47 am

    Murray getting puts forth a valiant effort in losing in 3rd set breaker to Fog-Man. Does anyone know what got Murray agitated with Fergus Murphy, the chair ump, in this match? I had my sound down.

    I’m loving watching Murray battle.

  • Hartt · October 8, 2019 at 10:49 am

    The problem with having such a young player.

    “This is the first players’ party of my life because I have always been too young.”
    ☺️
    15-year-old @CocoGauff
    had a good time. The #wtalinz players’ party was originally planned at a Casino but was then moved – for Coco.

    “Oh really, because of me? That’s really nice of you.” (WTA Linz tweet)

  • Andrew Miller · October 8, 2019 at 10:51 am

    I like GEMS life and I usually dislike this stuff. Svito is all in and then she says this is great semis! I’m done! Gael let’s see Shanghai!

    No problem with that. My issues are usually with fading players, ones that tank, players that make excuses, that treat coaches like dirt, or coaches that cash in on players. Gambling. Chewing out refs for no reason. Snapping racquets in two without realising that many people watching can’t even afford a restring. That kind of stuff.

    But if you’re playing well and GEMS life, no worries.

  • Hartt · October 8, 2019 at 11:01 am

    Marin Cilic posted a photo of him pushing a baby carriage and said his family will increase in 2020.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 8, 2019 at 12:46 pm

    Murray and Fog are a grudge match since juniors. End of 3 hour match Murray had an easy volley on top of net, Fog yelled as he hit the volley and though he made it, it angered Murray. Fog said, Don’t look at me! Murray then won the game 65 and argued Fergus and even told Fog to “shut up!” Fog then smiled and laughed at his chair and broke Murray and dominated the tiebreaker. Murray was burning and they had a quick handshake and then Murray lingered around cleaning up his chair area, as if waiting to walk off with Fog, to have a confrontation on the walk back to the locker room – or a fight. I would not be surprised if they yell or even fought in the locker room. Clearly there is a grudge between these two.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 8, 2019 at 12:48 pm

    I asked Fognini in Miami about Facing Andy Murray after he beat Sousa in three sets and he looked at me like I was nuts to ask about Murray after his match with Sousa, “It makes no sense for you to ask me about him now after this match…” I replied, This is my only chance to ask you for a book I’m doing about Facing Andy Murray. Fog then gave a vanilla bland answer about it and how they know each other since juniors, I could sense something was up between the two. Their head to head is now 4-4. Good rivalry.

  • Andrew Miller · October 8, 2019 at 5:06 pm

    Fognini response is actually respectful. The biggest compliment you can pay to a player is to play your heart out.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 8, 2019 at 5:16 pm

    Fognini yelling as Murray is about to hit a volley is a flagrant intentional hindrance. That’s as dirty as it gets in tennis. If you’ve ever seen worse sportsmanship than that please share it.

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