Andy Murray enjoyed playing in front of the Glasgow Davis Cup crowd in what he admitted might be the last time.
A dead rubber against lower-ranked Kazakh Dmitry Popko after Britain’s disappointing elimination was far from the 35-year-old’s most important match of the competition, but a nearly full house at the Emirates Arena still cheered him to a 6-4 6-3 win .
Murray has won 32 of his 35 singles Davis Cup matches, most famously all eight, which he played to win the title in Britain in 2015, with games against the United States and Australia, both in Glasgow, along with many others over the past decade and a half
He said: “I found it difficult at the beginning. It’s just hard to know how to play emotionally because you can’t fake it. I wanted to win today but if I lose it doesn’t matter. That’s what I enjoy about sports.
“But it was awesome. You did a great job today. It was the busiest thing all week. I’m glad I could go out and play in front of them. It may be the last time I play here or in front of a crowd like this for Great Britain.
“If it was the last time it was amazing what they did for our team. The spectators in many of our games made a big difference. They were some of the best memories I’ve had on a tennis court.
“I’m sad that we might not get the opportunity to play here again, but we could potentially be back here in February as well. We’ll just have to wait and see.”
Murray gave the crowd a long wave at the end and afterwards admitted it wasn’t until late in the match that it dawned on him that this could be the end of an era.
“I only thought about it today when the score was 5-2 in the second set,” he said. “I didn’t think about it before the weekend or during one of the doubles games or anything like that. I kind of felt that when I played the match.
“I felt that a little bit at the end. I lost my focus a bit and was a bit emotional about it.”
Captain Leon Smith seems unlikely to stay with Joe Salisbury and Murray after costly, albeit narrow, defeats to USA and the Netherlands, who progress to the last 16 at Britain’s expense in November.
Jack Draper, 20, who was injured this week, will be pushing hard for a debut next time Britain play Davis Cup, while Cameron Norrie and Dan Evans are both well ahead of Murray in the standings.
Britain are set to host the group stage of the finals again next year, albeit likely not in Glasgow, but barring another wildcard they would need to win a play-off in early 2023 to retain that role.
Having hacked and altered the format since 2018 when Gerard Pique’s Kosmos group took over management of the competition after a huge investment, they appear to have agreed on a group stage to be played in four cities in September, followed by an eight-team finals in September November.
Poor attendance at homeless clashes remains a problem, while the games in Hamburg were generally not well supported, but organizers said they were happy with the current line-up and announced that more than 100,000 people attended across the four venues.
https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/tennis/andy-murray-great-britain-kazakhstan-glasgow-jack-draper-b2169898.html Andy Murray admits after Davis Cup exit in Glasgow it ‘maybe the last time’