Tennis

Andy Murray hopes Miami Open does not relocate: ‘I love the city’

Andy Murray warms up during a morning practice at the Miami Open in Key Biscayne, Florida, on Tuesday, March 22, 2016.
Andy Murray warms up during a morning practice at the Miami Open in Key Biscayne, Florida, on Tuesday, March 22, 2016. El Nuevo Herald

Andy Murray said he would be “gutted” if the Miami Open decides to eventually move from the Key Biscayne location.

“I obviously love it here,” said the fourth-ranked Scot, who has a second home in the Brickell area. “I love training here. I spend so much of my time working at this place, I think it would be a shame if it moved because it has a lot of history, as well. When tournaments move away from their original venue, it loses a little something. So, I hope it stays.”

He said he would miss the event’s Latin flavor.

“Selfishly I love it because I love Miami,” he said. “I really love the city. I think they love tennis here. The Hispanic community here, the South Americans love tennis and their fans are unbelievably enthusiastic, so it makes for a great atmosphere. It’s a great event for a player.”

Murray also stressed that he believes in equal prize money for men and women, in the wake of the resignation of Indian Wells director Raymond Moore following his sexist comments.

“The timing of it was just so strange, right before a great women’s final, there were 16,000 people in the stadium waiting to see them play,” Murray said. “The whole thing was very strange and disappointing.”

▪ Simona Halep has decided to put off her nose surgery indefinitely.

Halep announced she would undergo the surgery in late January after she lost in the first round of the Australian Open, but she twice postponed the surgery in early February, first to play tournaments in Doha, Qatar, and Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and then indefinitely. On Tuesday, Halep said she’s feeling better.

“I had a good tournament at Indian Wells, I believe that I have a good game now, and I feel healthy.” Halep said. “I’m not sure [about the surgery] now, the doctor said that I have to do it, but we’ll see.”

▪ Petra Kvitova returns to the Miami Open after missing last year’s tournament for health reasons. Kvitova had mononucleosis in the middle of last year, and said she’s feeling better now but is wary of the South Florida weather.

“I think the humid and the warm weather will come soon,” Kvitova said. “I hope that I will be able to handle it, somehow.”

▪ Belinda Bencic is excited about Switzerland’s upcoming Fed Cup semifinal against the Czech Republic. The Swiss will host the mid-April semifinal in the closest tournament to a women’s tennis World Cup, and Bencic hopes to play doubles again with Martina Hingis.

Bencic, 19, and the Hingis, 35, closed out Switzerland’s quarterfinal win over Germany as a doubles pair.

“I hope a lot of people will come, and the interest in women’s tennis in Switzerland will grow bigger,” Bencic said of the upcoming semifinal.

▪ Carla Suarez Navarro is confident despite having lost to Serena Williams in last year’s final, and said Williams is still the player to beat despite her consecutive losses at the Australian Open and BNP Paribas Open finals.

“She’s not like a machine or like a robot, she cannot win every match that she plays,” Suarez Navarro said. “Always, when she is in the tournament, she is the favorite, she’s the No. 1.”

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