The 34-year-old has enjoyed a positive North-American hard-court swing, winning first-round matches in Cincinnati and Winston-Salem earlier this month. While Murray is cautiously optimistic about his game and fitness, he believes he can raise his level.
“Physically, I’ve been good since I’ve been here in the matches,” Murray said in his pre-tournament press conference. “I pulled up well the following days after them. That for me has been really positive. I would obviously like my game to be in a better place.
“It is interesting sometimes that you don’t feel like you’re playing particularly well, but I’ve had opportunities in my matches against top players in the past few weeks and not quite taken them. Maybe if I did, I’d be sitting here with a slightly different take on things.”
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Murray has played in six tour-level singles tournaments this season. However, in recent months, the World No. 114 has taken to the practice court with more regularity as he aims to transfer his form into matches.
“The positive thing in the past few months is that I haven’t been held back really from what I can do on the practice court,” Murray said. “I have been on the practice court and I have been training and doing all the things I wanted to do from a practise perspective. It is the matches where you need to ultimately go out there and perform. That’s what’s been frustrating the past few weeks.”
Murray, who defeated Serbian Novak Djokovic in the 2012 US Open final to capture his first major title, will begin his 15th Flushing Meadows campaign against World No. 3 Stefanos Tsitsipas in a tough opener for the Scot.
Despite this, Murray is relishing the chance to pit himself against one of the favourites for the title and is excited to do so in front of crowds once again in New York.
“[It is] not the easiest draw out there,” Murray said. “When you’re not seeded, these sorts of things can happen. It will be a good, good test for me to see kind of where my game’s at, where it’s progressed to from when I arrived in the States.
“The crowd’s always helped. They like people that fight, give their all, show their heart and emotion and energy on the court. I think over the years here I’ve had very good support, so I’ve enjoyed that.”