Andy Murray Will Have to Wait for the Olympic Doubles, but Raducanu Declines the Spot

Andy Murray, who is debating whether or not to attend his fifth and final Olympic Games in Paris, will have to wait to find out if he will be included in the Olympic doubles draw with Dan Evans.

Even though Emma Raducanu was also awarded an Olympic quota spot, she chose not to compete in the games. The only option for women’s singles will be Katie Boulter.

The men’s singles team for Great Britain is comprised of Cameron Norrie, Jack Draper, Dan Evans, and Murray. The LTA revealed its choices for the Olympic teams on Sunday. Murray, the three-time grand slam winner and two-time Olympic gold medalist in singles, earned his singles slot by using one of the quota spots granted to grand slam champions and Olympic gold medallists, while the first three singles players qualified based on their rankings.

Joe Salisbury and Neal Skupski have been nominated by Great Britain as a doubles team, and Murray and Evans have been nominated as well; however, their participation in the draw will depend on if their combined ranking will allow them to advance. Boulter and Heather Watson, as well as Harriet Dart and Maia Lumsden, who are the nominees for the women’s doubles category, will also have to wait and see if their rankings permit them to go to the draw.

Murray has emphasized repeatedly that he would only like to compete in Paris if he has a realistic chance of taking home a medal, even though his singles spot is guaranteed. Given his challenging singles record right now and the fact that Roland Garros, a red clay court, will host the Olympic tournament, it is obvious that the 37-year-old will fare better in doubles.

“I’m not sure,” Murray admitted on Sunday. “It depends a little bit physically how I’m doing and a bit how the next few weeks ago as well. My plan just now is to play but it’s not straightforward.”

Since doubles players rated inside the top 10 can choose any partner as long as they are inside the top 400, it appeared for much of this year that Great Britain would be able to send two specific men’s doubles teams. Prior to Skupski’s drop to No. 12 in the ATP doubles rankings last Monday, Salisbury and Skupski were both rated inside the top 10. The Olympic entry lists are based on these rankings.

In the unlikely case that Skupski had finished in the top 10, the LTA had been thinking about matching Salisbury with Murray and Skupski with Evans; however, they ultimately had to choose other pairings. The head of Great Britain’s tennis squad for the Olympics, Iain Bates, stated that the LTA is still optimistic that Murray and Evans will qualify, especially because singles players are given preference under the incredibly complex Olympic qualification standards.

The Olympic qualifying regulations have also been a major factor in Raducanu’s exclusion from the team and the women’s nominees. Raducanu, the winner of the US Open in 2021, also needed a quota spot to compete in singles since her current ranking of No. 209 would not permit her to enter the main event directly.

In the event that three or more champions apply, the players with the most major titles or Olympic gold medals will have first refusal. Each draw has a maximum of two quota spots available. With four-time grand slam winner Naomi Osaka, three-time grand slam champion Angelique Kerber, and number one seed Caroline Wozniacki all outside the top 100 and ahead of Raducanu in the rankings, it didn’t seem possible that Raducanu would earn a quota spot.

Raducanu declined an offer of a place that had been abruptly extended to him. Raducanu mentioned the health hazards of switching from grass to clay so soon after Wimbledon during her loss to Katie Boulter in Nottingham.

According to Raducanu, “it was pretty clear to me.” “I am very single-minded and I do things my own way and in my own time whenever I want, not in a diva way, but just prioritising my body and my health because I know if I am fit and giving my 100 per cent I know that great things are coming. I just don’t think there is any need to put any additional stress on my body or any risk, especially with my history.”

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