Andy Murray admits: ‘It’s not how I want to finish, that’s the hardest part’

• Murray expects to have surgery after his last match
• ‘I was in too much pain, I wasn’t enjoying it any more’

Andy Murray, a complex man in search of simple pleasures, is resigned to hobbling away in pain from the sport that has been his life for more than two decades. But, as he contemplates what may be his last appearance on a tennis court – against Roberto Bautista Agut in the first round of the Australian Open on Monday – the manner of his leaving still consumes him.

He has two stark choices: replace the hip that has turned him into a walking target and dream about another improbable comeback in the distant future, or have what is known as re-surfacing, a midway solution that would rescue at least some of his athleticism, if not enough for him to play professional tennis.

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