World No. 1 Andy Murray hopeful he is back to his best despite semifinal loss

Murray hopeful he is back to his best despite semifinal loss

PARIS (AP) — Despite falling just short of a second successive French Open final, Andy Murray feels he is getting back to his best — just in time for Wimbledon.

Murray arrived at Roland Garros on the back of a poor run of form which included early exits at Indian Wells, Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Madrid and Rome.

The top-ranked Murray has improved over the past two weeks, shaking off a cold to reach the semifinals, where he lost 6-7 (6), 6-3, 5-7, 7-6 (3), 6-1 to third-seeded Stan Wawrinka on Friday.

“I’m proud of the tournament I had,” Murray said. “I did well considering. I was one tiebreak away from getting to the final when I came in really struggling. So I have to be proud of that.”

Murray feels he ultimately paid the price for his bad results in the build-up to the Grand Slam tournament.

“Maybe the lack of matches hurt me a little bit in the end today,” he said. “That was a very high intensity match. A lot of long points. When you haven’t been playing loads over four, four-and-a-half hours, that can catch up to you a little bit.

“I only have myself to blame for that, for the way I played coming into the tournament. But, you know, I turned my form around really, really well and ended up having a good tournament, all things considered.”

Murray ended 2016 at No. 1 after a string of successes, including a Wimbledon title, an unprecedented second consecutive Olympic gold medal and runner-up finishes at the Australian Open and French Open.

Andy Murray hopeful he is back to his best despite semifinal loss
Britain’s Andy Murray leaves after losing his semifinal match against Switzerland’s Stan Wawrinka at the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium, in Paris, France. Friday, June 9, 2017. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

The 30-year-old is hoping his performance at Roland Garros is a sign he is getting back to that level.

“I don’t know how close I am to that,” Murray said. “You know, I played pretty well these last few matches. Even when you’re playing well, you’re not going to win every match you play, but I put myself in a position to reach a slam final, so I’m obviously playing pretty good.”

Murray, who said he expected to have more ups and downs at the tournament than he did, believes he can take the positives from the French Open onto grass — specifically Wimbledon, where he will be bidding to retain his title.

“I do feel like having an event like this can give me a boost, and hopefully have a strong grass court season and try to understand what worked well this event and what worked well in the sort of 10 days in the buildup and the practices,” Murray said.

Wimbledon starts July 3 at the All England Club.

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