Murray to start 2012 season in Australia


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The Independent Online

Andy Murray will open his 2012 season in Australia after confirming he will take part in the Brisbane International.

World number three Murray will use the Queensland event, which runs from January 1-8, to fine tune his game before launching another attempt to land a maiden grand slam crown at the Australian Open in Melbourne a fortnight later.

"I love coming to Australia, but I've never had the opportunity to visit Queensland before," Murray said.

"I've heard only good things about the Brisbane International tournament, so I am looking forward to competing in January.

"With a quality field it is the perfect way to begin my Australian campaign."

Tournament director Cameron Pearson was delighted Murray had added his name to an already stellar line-up.

He said: "Andy is arguably one of the best players on the men's tour at the moment and he will be a real asset to the Brisbane International in 2012.

"It is great to be able to attract players of this calibre and the fact that he has chosen to play in Brisbane just demonstrates the reputation the event has built on the tour.

"Andy will join Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova in their debut year at the Brisbane International and I am sure all three will be fan favourites with the Queensland public."

Scot Murray will today announce whether he is able to continue in the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals after being hampered by a groin injury in an opening defeat by David Ferrer yesterday.

The 24-year-old picked up the problem in his left leg during practice last week and admitted that, had the tournament been a less prestigious one, he would not have taken to the court at all.

Murray looked uncomfortable throughout the 6-4 7-5 loss at London's O2 Arena, his first defeat by Ferrer on hard courts, and received treatment in between sets.