| LONDON, June 21
LONDON, June 21 Andy Murray, who has yet to win
a tennis grand slam or an Olympic medal, intends to rectify one
of those failings over the next two months on Wimbledon grass.
Selected on Thursday as the first tennis player in Team GB,
and the 248th athlete in a 550-strong British squad for the
London Games, Murray said had learned from his unhappy
experience at the 2008 Beijing Games.
The British number one, then ranked sixth in the world,
suffered the massive shock of losing his first round singles
match to Taiwan's lowly ranked Lu Yen-Hsun in straight sets.
"Having had the experience of last time I think I will have
learned from that and do things a little bit differently this
time and hopefully that will contribute to a better
performance," the 25-year-old Scot, now fourth in the world,
told reporters at Wimbledon.
"I was very disappointed when I finished so early in Beijing
but it also gave me a kick up the bum," added the three-times
Grand Slam finalist.
"I ended up doing well at the U.S. open afterwards because I
was very disappointed with myself and really went for it."
Murray, who will carry the burden of expectation at
Wimbledon again this month as fourth seed and as the only
British player with any hope of singles success, left no doubt
about the importance of the Games.
Beijing, he said, had opened his eyes and the Olympic
tournament was now effectively a fifth Grand Slam. Before the
2008 Games he had not known what to say when asked whether
tennis was an Olympic sport.
The sight of current world number one Novak Djokovic, who
will carry Serbia's flag in London's opening ceremony, shedding
tears of joy at winning a bronze in Beijing left him in no doubt
about how others felt.
Losing in the semi-finals of a Grand Slam would be more
likely to produce tears of frustration.
"I think it gave me a lot of motivation and also an
understanding of how important the Olympics is to a tennis
player," said Murray.
"When I lost there I know how disappointed I was. After you
go back to your room in the Olympic village and there's a table
of who's won and lost and which medals have been won, you feel
that you've kind of not contributed.
"It's tough and I didn't like it so I want to try and do
better this time."
Murray, who is likely to partner his brother Jamie in the
Olympic doubles, said Beijing was still one of the best sporting
experiences he had ever had thanks to staying in the village and
watching others perform.
He has learned from that, incorporating some methods into
his training regime.
"Boxing is a sport that I love and I respect the boxers so
much because of what they put their bodies through," he said.
"I've met quite a lot of the boxers, I've learned a lot from
the way they train and how disciplined they are with their
eating, how structured their training methods are.
"I also get inspired by seeing other athletes. For me
watching Usain Bolt at the last Olympic Games was incredible to
Staying in the Olympic village could be a logistical
problem, with Wimbledon in the south-west and some distance from
the Olympic Park in the east.
Murray lives just 15 minutes from the grass courts and
staying at home would be more logical, at least during the
tennis tournament which starts on July 28 and ends on Aug. 5.
"I stayed in the Olympic village during Beijing and I really
enjoyed it. I would like to stay in the village this year," he
said. "I kind of need to do obviously what's best for the
Britain's last Olympic tennis medal was silver in the men's
doubles at Atlanta in 1996 through Tim Henman and Neil Broad.
Despite the lack of recent success, Britain tops the tennis
medals table with 16 golds, 13 silvers and 16 bronzes won
between 1896 and 1924. Tennis was then removed as an Olympic
medal sport and reinstated only in 1988.
(Editing by John Mehaffey)