Winner Andy Murray contemplates playing singles at US Open

Feliciano Lopez strongly denies match-fixing allegations made against him

Feliciano Lopez strongly denies match-fixing allegations made against him

"It had been probably five or six years that after matches I would get some pain and aching and throbbing [in the hip]".

Sporting obituaries were duly written and tributes poured in for one of the world's leading sportsmen.

Murray's career looked as though it may have been over earlier this year, when he broke down in tears before the start of the Australian Open in January, saying his quality of life was being affected by pain cause from a hip injury.

And, as he showed in this epic doubles victory at the Fever-Tree Championships, he has lost none of the fire, competitiveness or sheer bloody-mindedness that once propelled him to world No1.

Murray and Lopez - the latter "fresh" from winning the singles title less than an hour earlier - beat Britain's Joe Salisbury and Rajeev Ram of the United States 7-6 (6) 5-7 10-5 after a third-set match tie-break.

Murray's serve let him down again, but a spectacular lob from the Scot helped them break straight back, saving two set points in the process, before play was halted.

"I felt relaxed at the beginning of the week, but felt more nervous as it went on".

"I've won with a metal hip". "But I'm sure at some stage it will come, a bit of a plateau, because it's been very quick and constant improvements just now, but I still have to improve quite a few things, like, physically". I wasn't thinking about this.

"It's not just to get back on the court playing singles", he said."It's to protect my hip for the longer term to make sure that my muscles are in the correct balance so that I'm not impacting the hip in the same spot all of the time. So it's really special".

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"It's not just to get back on the court playing singles". He knows every blade of grass on the main court, having covered every inch of it as a singles player, something that there is no need to do with a partner to share the load. I think I have a couple of options, like, after Wimbledon, is either I continue with doubles but start training and practicing singles through the US Open swing, and then try and maybe play singles after that.

"I don't have to be getting to the US Open this year and be really competitive and have to win it to enjoy it".

"I'm so happy to have this man (Murray) playing with me". Federer is a month older than Lopez.

A tense first set saw Murray and Lopez save two set points - one when trailing 5-4 and another in the tiebreak - before clinching the opener 7-6 (6).

They even saved a set point before taking an entertaining first set when Ram missed an otherwise routine volley.

Britain's Andy Murray reacts to their win at match-point as he plays with Spain's Feliciano Lopez against USA player Rajeev Ram and Britain's Joe Salisbury during their men's doubles final tennis match at the ATP Fever-Tree Championships tournament at Queen's Club in west London on June 23, 2019. "We obviously had some chances to finish it in the second set", said Murray.

Lopez, who must have been running on empty, somehow conjured up a series of stunning winners in the match tie-break to secure his own personal double and an unlikely, but welcome, victory for Murray.

Murray and Lopez celebrate victory in the mens doubles final.

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