Greg Rusedski believes that Andy Murray’s main goal when he returns to competition in the new year will be to become world No 1.
Murray has been stepping up his pre-season training in Miami following back surgery and is due to play his first tournament of 2014 at the Qatar Open in Doha in the first week of the season.
Rusedski, who is playing at the Statoil Masters Tennis at the Royal Albert Hall in London this week, said: “I think Andy’s motivated to try and get ahead of Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer and to get to No 1. That’s got to be his goal now. He’s been No 2, he’s won two majors. I think you have to refocus.”
Rusedski believes the Scot can come back stronger after surgery to cure a lower back problem which had troubled him for nearly two years.
“You could see at the US Open, when he lost to Stan Wawrinka, that he wasn’t able to generate enough power on the ball and his movement was affected,” he said. “He’s such a good player that he could usually get away with it.”
Heather Watson is taking a positive attitude into the new year after starting to work with a new coach, Diego Veronelli, in Florida. “So far it’s going really well and I’m working very hard,” said the 21-year-old from Guernsey, who endured a poor year after contracting glandular fever, splitting with long-time coach Mauricio Hadad after Wimbledon and slipping down the world rankings to No 121.
“I can’t wait for 2014. When you start a new season it’s always kind of like the slate is wiped clean. I’m feeling really positive now and I feel like I’m playing well already even after only a couple of weeks.”