Despite empty stands at Flushing Meadows, the heroics of Andy Murray in his return to the Grand Slam tournament attracted a crowd. When Murray started his comeback from a two-set deficit in his first-round match at the US Open against Japanese world No. 49 Yoshihito Nishioka, some prominent spectators turned up at Arthur Ashe Stadium outside the hospitality boxes.
Among the onlookers were Dominic Thiem, Stefanos Tsitsipas, and Alexander Zverev, as were Briton Kyle Edmund and Murray’s brother Jamie. There may be no fans at the #USOpen, but @andy murray & Nishioka @usopen pic.twitter are out watching the stars. Com/hvVCVIJ0Wp- LTA (@the LTA) September 1, 2020 In the first two sets, the 33-year-old, who normally thrives on the adrenaline of playing in front of a packed crowd, was as flat as the atmosphere. But in front of his new fan club, Murray dug deep to pull off an amazing 4-6 4-6 7-6 (5) 7-6 (4) 6-4 victory. He said, “That was one of the things that helped for me. It’s rare to have a lot of players watching you play a match.Someone get this guy an ice bath! @andy murray deserves a break after a grueling five-set win pic.twitter.com/3cyRQxykm6- US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 1, 2020 ” “But for me, my father-in-law was there. He was up in the suite watching me. My brother was there with his coach watching. There were also a few British players there to watch and support me. “While the overall environment was very flat, I was at least able to look up and see a few faces at various parts of the court that inspired me at the end of the match and when I started to turn things around. For the first two sets, Yoshihito Nishioka was in charge (Seth Wenig/AP) Twenty months ago in Australia, Murray tearfully acknowledged that his long-term hip injury could cause him to leave the sport. A few days later, Roberto Bautista Agut lost a difficult five-set victory to the Scot, then watched on the big screen a montage of farewells from his fellow competitors. 596 days, a metal hip, a short but pleasant one I don’t know if it was because in the first few sets, I didn’t use as much energy because I was holding back a little bit. In the second round, Murray will meet 20-year-old Felix Auger Aliassime, the world’s No. 21.