Andy Murray says hip injury ‘put a lot on strain’ on his marriage

Tennis champion underwent surgery in January 2019

Sarah Young
Thursday 21 November 2019 12:22
Emotional Andy Murray says Australian Open could be last tournament after struggling to recover from hip surgery

Tennis champion Andy Murray has opened up about the impact his hip injury and subsequent “resurfacing” operation had on his marriage.

In January, the 32-year-old announced that the Australian Open might be the final tournament of his career due to the continuing pain he was experiencing from a “severely damaged hip”.

However, on 28 January, Murray elected to undergo an operation on the hip to “improve his quality of life”.

The operation was a success and Murray enjoyed a winning return to competitive action at Queen’s Club in London in June.

In a new interview with The Times, the two-time Wimbledon champion has opened up about his injury and admitted that he was struggling with depression throughout that time.

“I was pretty down, that’s for sure,” Murray said.

“It was a really tough period for me because it wasn’t so much the actual injury itself. Being injured can be frustrating, but the issue that I had was with me every single day, sleeping and walking. It wasn’t just I hit a serve and my arm hurt. This woke me up in the night. It was bad.”

When asked if his family were aware of how much pain he was in, Murray said that he tried to put on a “brave face” for his children, but that his wife, Kim Sears, knew just how much he was struggling.

He added that his low mood negatively affected his marriage and praised Sears for her continued support.

"It put a lot of strain on our relationship, just because I was down all the time," Murray admitted.

“She has been brilliant and I would probably be quite selfish, just in terms of thinking about myself and how I’m feeling all the time and not actually realising the impact that has on all the people around me.

“When everyone was trying to encourage me to keep going and keep trying and keep playing, I was, like, ‘You don’t know what it’s like. You don’t know what it is that I’m feeling’.”

Murray went on to explain that the injury affected everyone around him, including his wider team and even his physiotherapists family.

Despite the strain of the injury, Murray revealed that the hip operation has improved not only his quality of life, but also that of those around him.

“People say it all the time, but for me this was genuinely life-changing for all sorts of reasons, not just to play tennis, but when I’m crawling through a tunnel in soft play with my children, or just getting down on the floor to play and roll around with them,” Murray said.

“I couldn’t do that before. I couldn’t get the same enjoyment out of doing that with my children as I can now. So the lady that operated on me, I’m unbelievably thankful to her.”

The “resurfacing” operation – which involves a metal ball-and-socket joint being fitted into the hip – was carried out at the Princess Grace Hospital in Marylebone by Sarah Muirhead-Allwood, a consultant orthopaedic surgeon and one of the world’s leading hip specialists, on 28 January.

Murray said that the procedure was “much longer” and “more brutal” than anything he had experienced before, explaining that it look twice as long as expected.

“The day I woke up I was in so much pain. I was in horrific pain,” Murray explained.

“It was probably only about six to eight weeks after, when the swelling and stuff had started to settle down and the scar started to heal up, that I started to feel no pain when I was walking, and that would be the first time in probably three years.”

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