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Murray to make coach decision after Italy tie

ESPN staff
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Andy Murray competed at last week's Miami Masters without Ivan Lendl in his camp © Getty Images
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Andy Murray is waiting until after Great Britain's Davis Cup tie in Italy before sitting down and sifting through the current offers on the table to become his new coach.

Murray was left "gutted" two weeks ago when he announced he had parted ways with coach of two years Ivan Lendl, the man who guided him to not only his grand slam breakthrough but the championship he wanted more than any other: Wimbledon.

The British No.1, speaking at the Tennis Club di Napoli ahead of GB's first Davis Cup quarter-final since 1986, joked on April Fool's Day that an announcement on an appointment was imminent.

'Murray must forget fun and friendship'

Leon Smith has not ruled out a future full-time coaching role © Getty Images
  • Andy Murray may have tried to fool his following by claiming on April Fool's Day that he was about to announce a new coach, but former Wimbledon champion Pat Cash tells ESPN's Nick Atkin that the British No.1 must be thinking more seriously about the potential candidates to replace Ivan Lendl.
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The claim fooled few but Murray insists he is taking the decision seriously and his inbox is bulging with proposals from some of the best coaches in the game to those he calls "not in a million years".

"Some people want to be paid a lot of money," Murray told The Times. "There are some people you might think would be a great coach and there are those who aren't so well known, but when you chat, you respect what they say about your game.

"I'll have to wait and see."

Turning his attentions to this weekend's showdown with the Italian team led by world No.13 Fabio Fognini, Murray said: "Everyone is always very pumped up for these weeks. We're very motivated, and that's very important.

"I also think that Leon [Smith, the British team captain] has brought in all the right people to do their roles. As a manager or captain, it's not always easy to get the right personalities. But there's a great team spirit from the player, the captain and all of the backroom staff."

Concerns have been raised with Murray developing a stomach bug and remaining in his hotel room throughout Thursday, but he is expected to make a full recovery and be fit for the beginning of the tie.

GB advanced to the last eight with victory over the US on the clay in San Diego two months ago. But Murray is wary of the Italians on what is their preferred surface.

"It will be a good challenge playing on the clay in Italy," he added. "They have some very good clay-court players with a passionate crowd behind them.

"It will be a tough weekend and the games will be tight, but it's great playing in big matches like this in the World Group."

Meanwhile, the BBC reports that captain Smith has opted for James Ward ahead of British No.2 Dan Evans as Great Britain's second singles player in the Davis Cup quarter-final in Italy.

Ward, the world No.160, beat American Sam Querrey, then ranked at 45, in the previous round. Ward will open against Fognini on Friday, before Murray takes on Andreas Seppi, ranked 34th.

Smith is also expected to keep the same team that was victorious in California in February, with Murray again teaming up with Colin Fleming in the doubles. Smith's other option in the doubles is Ross Hutchins, who is returning to Davis Cup action for the first time since 2012 after recovering from Hodgkin's lymphoma.

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