Andy Murray believes that Dan Evans, one of the heroes of Britain's recent Davis Cup triumph over Russia, needs to become physically stronger and to broaden his horizons if he is to realise his potential.
Murray, who plays his opening match in the Monte Carlo Masters against France's Edouard Roger-Vasselin here today, described Britain's victory as "one of our best-ever wins" and was particularly impressed by Evans' performance.
However when asked about Evans' confession that he does not reproduce his Davis Cup form on a regular basis "because I don't train hard enough and don't work hard enough", Murray was clear about what the 22-year-old needs to do. "He's been given a lot of opportunities," Murray said. "Not everyone is capable of doing it every single day of the year. It's a lifestyle that you have to decide: 'I want to do this'."
Murray pointed out that the quick indoor court in the Davis Cup had played to Evans' strengths. "If you come and play on the clay courts and on the slower hard courts, it's a different game, where you need to be physically stronger, you need to have better patience on the court," Murray said. "You can't get away with one or two good shots. It often takes five, six, seven shots."
Recalling the benefits from his own experiences ever since going to Barcelona to train when he was 15, Murray pointed out that Evans had not competed outside Britain or Ireland for more than a year.
"He doesn't like travelling much," Murray said. "I never minded the travelling from a young age. When I went to Barcelona I saw a lot of the top players practising. I got to practise with a lot of them. I also went to a few Davis Cups with Tim [Henman] and Greg [Rusedski] when I was pretty young.
"It would have been around 15 or 16 when I realised how much time you had to spend on the court. It wasn't until I actually got on to the tour, when I was 18 or 19, that I realised how much work I needed to do physically to be able to compete with the best players."
Novak Djokovic, who was concerned that he might not recover in time after suffering an ankle injury 10 days ago, practised again today and said that he would be fit to play his opening match today against Mikhail Youzhny. Rafael Nadal, chasing his ninth successive title here, faces Australia's Marinko Matosevic.