Tennis

Murray gears up for new challenges

Andy Murray (GBR) prepares to hit a backhand to Marcel Granollers
Andy Murray beats Mikhail Youzhny at the Western & Southern Open.
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MASON, Ohio (AP)

Olympic gold medal? Check. Win a major? Check. Finally win Wimbledon? Check.

Andy Murray has a new ''To Do'' list. Instead of trying to win majors, he's now defending them.

Murray approaches the US Open with a new perspective after winning it for the first time last year.

''It's a new experience, so I don't know how I'm going to respond,'' he said Monday ahead of the Western & Southern Open. ''You know, I'm staying in the same hotel as last year, and I'll try and stick to a similar sort of schedule and try and get comfortable there as soon as I arrive in New York. I'm looking forward to it.''

''I get excited always for the Grand Slams, and there's some pressures that you can deal with well and some you don't,'' he said. ''Hopefully, this will be one that I deal with well. I've always enjoyed playing in New York. I hope I've got the energy there and the desire to have a good tournament.''

After becoming the first British man to win Wimbledon since Fred Perry in 1936, Murray took nearly a week off. He vacationed in the Bahamas before resuming his training in Miami. He returned to tournament play last week in Montreal, where he lost in the third round.

''In the time after Wimbledon, those few days it was tough,'' he said. ''It was really busy. It was very demanding. I wasn't particularly stressed out by it because I just won Wimbledon, so I wasn't really that bothered by all of it.

''Like I say, once I actually got away from it and stuff, it was just nice to be able to really sort of relax and not have to worry about anything else. I'm just glad that kind of I'm back on the tour now and doing what I like to do and that's play tennis.''

Murray won Western & Southern championships in 2008 and 2011. He lost in the Round of 16 last year and wouldn't speculate on his chances this year.

''I don't really know,'' he said. ''I mean, sometimes I played really well here, and sometimes I haven't. I need to try and get some matches in because that would help for the US Open.''

''Last year, I didn't play particularly well in the two warm-up tournaments. I only played one match in Canada and two matches here, and I won the US Open. So I'm not putting loads of pressure on myself this week.''

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