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RTL Today – Disappointing result: Murray looking for quick improvement after leaving Stuttgart

Andy Murray said his grass game “needs to improve” if he is to put up a decent showing at Wimbledon after Tuesday’s first-round defeat at the Stuttgart Open.

Murray, a two-time All England Club champion, lost 6-3, 6-4 to star American Marcos Giron, No. 54, who had failed to win a match in Stuttgart in his two previous attempts.

“My game needs to improve, the level of tennis during the tournament is high. I have to play better if I want to win more games,” Murray said.

The former world number one, a finalist in Stuttgart two years ago, spent time in Britain training on grass following his Roland Garros first-round defeat to Stan Wawrinka last month.

That preparation didn’t pay off at the Weissenhof Club, whose courts are supervised by All England Club experts.

Murray will be hoping to resume playing on grass at the Queen’s Club in London, which will be his last training session before what will likely be the last Wimbledon of his career.

The 2013 and 2016 Wimbledon champion fell in 75 minutes. As a result of the defeat, the Scot will drop out of the Top 120 rankings, but he is not yet panicking with Wimbledon approaching on July 1.

“I’ve had a difficult few months, but physically I feel OK now – in my ankle and back. Since I stepped onto the grass, everything has improved,” he said.

In the first set, Murray hit a close-range volley for a 4-2 lead, and Giron closed the set three games later.

Murray, who only recently switched racket brands, expressed disappointment at missing out on his chances in Stuttgart.

“I had trouble breaking the serve. I haven’t broken serve in a few matches and that was usually my strong suit.

“On a fast surface like grass, the sets are tight. When opportunities arise, you have to be clinical – he was and I wasn’t.”

The 37-year-old scored the first six points of the second set, but was unable to maintain the momentum.

“I grew up watching Andy. It’s an honor to be on the court with him,” said 30-year-old Giron.

“I’m grateful to have beaten him and happy to have won. I was excited to get a lesson from him on the grass.

“It’s unreal what he’s done in his career. Playing with him on grass is unbelievable – I’m thrilled to win.”

Jack Draper will be Girona’s opponent in the second round. The Briton defeated the 54th-ranked American in five sets in January in the first round of the Australian Open.

Murray was defeated in the 2022 Stuttgart final by Matteo Berrettini, who had previously advanced 7-6 (10/8), 5-7, 7-5 over Roman Safiullin.

Murray said his future at the Paris Olympics is not yet certain.

“I still have to see what will happen with the Olympics. I’m not sure what the doubles situation is and I don’t know if it’s worth playing just singles.

“My body hasn’t felt very good on clay for the last few months. I have to wait and see what happens with this.”