It appears the early arrival of his first child could be the only thing stopping Andy Murray at the Australian Open given how he ended 2015 and started 2016 representing Great Britain.
The world No.2 ended last year leading Great Britain to a first Davis Cup triumph since 1936 and began 2016 at the Hopman Cup in Perth with a commanding 6-2 6-2 victory over France’s Kenny de Schepper in 58 minutes.
He then helped Heather Watson to a mixed doubles victory to secure the win to put them in a good spot to make a run at Saturday’s final.
Murray is a four-time Australian Open runner-up and looks on track to at least get that far again.
But with wife Kim Sears’ due date nearing it could provide the only hurdle.
However, the 28-year-old is looking forward to fatherhood and will put that before tennis.
“I’m going to fly home I think,” Murray said.
“We spoke about it and chatted and obviously it’d be disappointing if I was to get in that position and not be able to play the final.
“But I’d be way more disappointed winning the Australian Open and not being at the birth of the child.
“Hopefully it doesn’t come to that. It’s going to be a big change but I am very excited about it. I have got a few weeks of tennis here and then I’ll take February off to spend time with Kim.”
Murray hasn’t been happy with his practice since arriving in Perth but his near flawless win over de Schepper left no room for concern.
“I hadn’t actually been playing well in practice at all. I’ve been struggling and I don’t know exactly why that it is, but I get on the match court and it’s different,” he said.
“It’s better to have it that way rather than play great in practice and struggle in matches. I practice hard and I got used to the warm weather which can be brutal. I feel good.”
15 July 2019
Novak Djokovic staged a remarkable escape to beat Roger Federer in arguably the most drama... More
Novak Djokovic is keenly aware of the significance of his fifth-set performance against Ro... More
7 December 2017
After calling time on his 2017 season with an elbow injury in July, Novak Djokovic is look... More