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Andy Murray hopes new schedule will help his Slam hopes

Laura Robson and Andy Murray
Robson and Murray will be GB's first Hopman Cup duo since 1992

Andy Murray hopes the decision to skip his title defence in Doha will help his chances of securing a first Grand Slam title at the Australian Open.

The British number one has won the Doha title for the last two years, but will instead partner Laura Robson at the Hopman Cup in Australia from 2 January.

Murray hopes this will give him time to acclimatise to the Australian heat.

"I'm looking forward to getting to Australia early and making sure I'm over the jet lag," he said.

The 22-year-old decided to stay in warm Miami for Christmas rather than fly back to Scotland in a bid to help him prepare for the hot temperatures in Perth and Melbourne, where the Australian Open gets under way on 18 January.

I suppose this way he gets used to the conditions here a bit earlier

Lleyton Hewitt on Andy Murray

"What I did before, going to Doha in the first week of the year, you play every match at night and it is cold," he told the Hopman Cup tournament programme.

"I was coming back from Miami and going to Scotland for a few days over Christmas.

"That meant I was spending three or four weeks training in the heat, coming back to Scotland where it's cold, going to Doha where's it's cold and then go to Australia and have five days to get used to the heat again.

"I think this way will work much better."


Murray will play at least three singles rubbers in the round-robin Hopman Cup, and will also play three mixed doubles matches alongside the 15-year-old Robson.

Australia's Lleyton Hewitt, who will partner Sam Stosur as the top-ranked team in Perth, said that Murray's change of plan could help the Scot's chances of breaking his Grand Slam duck.

"I suppose this way he gets used to the conditions here a bit earlier," said Hewitt.

"It could work for him, Doha's a great tournament to play, but I can understand his thoughts behind it."

Murray and Robson are the third seeds for the eight-team tournament and play Kazakhstan in their first tie at the Burswood Dome on Monday before matches against Germany and Russia, with the winners of the two groups going through to the final on 9 January.

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see also
Murray & Robson form Hopman team
05 Sep 09 |  Tennis
Murray reflects on magnificent year
14 Dec 09 |  Tennis
Murray suffers Tour Finals exit
27 Nov 09 |  Tennis
Murray sent crashing by Verdasco
26 Jan 09 |  Tennis
Murray battles to win over Nadal
03 Jan 09 |  Tennis
Defeat ends Robson's US Open bid
29 Aug 09 |  Tennis
Robson loses Aussie Open final
31 Jan 09 |  Tennis
Slovakia claim Hopman Cup glory
09 Jan 09 |  Tennis

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