On New Year's Eve 2019, British tennis star Andy Murray shared a photo on Instagram that proved he was eager to say goodbye to 2018. Surrounded by several bottles of alcohol, Murray wrote, "Celebrating the end of 2018. What a sh** year that was!"
It was a funny caption, but neither Murray nor the tennis world were laughing on Thursday during his Australian Open press conference. Sitting with his head in his hands for much of the presser, Murray told the media that this year's contest in Melbourne may be his last tournament because his hip injury is nowhere near healed.
Andy Murray's press conference. SO, so tough to watch. https://t.co/rsfdycWl1Z— José Morgado (@josemorgado) January 11, 2019
"I've been in a lot of pain for about 20 months now," Murray said in Melbourne this week.
While the player said he's tried "everything" to get his hip feeling better, including undergoing surgery last year, he is still playing through pain.
"I spoke to my team and told them, 'I can't keep doing this' and I need to have an end point," Murray explained.
That's when the former world No. 1 broke down in tears. The reporters respectfully waited several moments before asking if that meant the Aussie Open may be his last tournament.
"I think there's a chance of that yeah, for sure," Murray answered.
His plan is to have this year's Wimbledon be his final tournament, but he admitted he's not sure he's even able to get to that point.
British media are devastated. Some headlines are mourning, "As Britain's greatest tennis player Andy Murray signals the end of his career, a look back at the scruffy Scots kid we all came to love."
Should this really be Murray's last year on the court, he'll have left behind an historic legacy. He has three grand slams to his name, including a very emotional win at Wimbledon. In July 2013, he became the first Brit to win Wimbledon since Fred Perry captured the trophy in 1936. Last but not least, Murray will forever be remembered as one of The Big Four male tennis players of this generation. The other three are, of course, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, and Roger Federer.
Murray's fellow tennis pros and prominent British leaders, like Prime Minister Theresa May, sent good thoughts Murray's way this week.
Andy, just watched your conference. Please don’t stop trying. Keep fighting. I can imagine your pain and sadness. I hope you can overcome this. You deserve to retire on your own terms, whenever that happens. We love you @andy_murray and we want to see you happy and doing well. ??— Juan M. del Potro (@delpotrojuan) January 11, 2019
Andy Murray has had a fantastic career and time and time again has made this nation proud. We all hope we can see much more of him playing this year and when he does finish, he will be remembered as one of the best and most successful athletes of his or any generation.— Theresa May (@theresa_may) January 11, 2019