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Murray happy to escape sauna



Published: Fri, January 18, 2013 @ 12:00 a.m.

Associated Press

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA

On a hot day at the Australian Open, it was perhaps fitting for Andy Murray to be talking about short shorts.

And the weather, of course.

After soaking in an ice bath to cool down, Murray said he was thankful that his match went quickly on Thursday when temperatures reached 106 degrees — and the court felt like a sauna.

“There were very few long rallies. So it worked out well for me because it was really, really tough conditions,” said Murray, who won in straight sets over Joao Sousa of Portugal 6-2, 6-2, 6-4.

Murray sat between changeovers sipping bottled water and with an “ice towel” slung over his neck — a towel packed and bound with chunks of ice.

Union Jacks and Scottish flags flew in the stands, where fans sang a song called “Andy Style” to the tune of “Gangnam Style.”

After the win, a confident Murray tossed his racket to the ground and thanked fans by hurling his sweaty wristbands and a damp towel into the stands.

The 25-year-old Scot has been dubbed “A New Andy” at this year’s Australian Open.

Unburdened by the pressure that followed him on previous trips to Australia, he arrives this year as the reigning major champion.

Now that he has ended the 76-year drought for British men at the majors, he doesn’t have to field the same nagging questions about whether he has the talent to win a Grand Slam.

Which is why the world’s No. 3-ranked player was talking about tight shirts and short shorts in his post-match news conference.

The subject of his shirt had come up in the first round when he explained he hasn’t bulked up his upper body, but it may have appeared that way because he’s wearing a tighter shirt this year.

Elaborating Thursday, he said the change of style was decided on by his sponsor, Adidas, but he didn’t mind the snug new fit and preferred it to tops with low, baggy sleeves that can impede the elbow during swings.

“The less material there is on the shirt I think probably the better. There’s less to get in the way,” he said, with his typical deadpan delivery. “So long as they’re tailored somewhat, I think there’s no real problem.”

Murray was then asked his personal view on certain men’s players who seemed to be wearing shorter shorts this year in a nod to the 1970s.

“I actually wore a pair at Wimbledon,” he said. “Not quite like what Ivan (Lendl) and those guys used to wear on the court. I can’t see a return to them, to be honest.”

Thinking about it made him smile: “Yeah, they were a bit too short. Didn’t leave too much to the imagination.”


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