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Page last updated at 23:00 GMT, Tuesday, 15 June 2010 00:00 UK

Andy Murray decides to sit out Davis Cup play-off

Andy Murray in action at Queens
Andy Murray is focusing all his attention on Wimbledon

Andy Murray has opted out of playing in Great Britain's Davis Cup relegation play-off against Turkey next month.

With Alex Bogdanovic already missing, new captain Leon Smith will be without Britain's two highest ranked players for the tie scheduled for 9-11 July.

Defeat to Turkey in Eastbourne would relegate Britain to the bottom tier of the event, Euro-Africa Division Three.

But Murray, who is struggling to regain his form in time for Wimbledon, thinks younger players need to step up.

The British number one, who informed Smith of his decision on Monday, said: "I've given a lot of reasons for not playing and I do think that it's time for us to start winning ties, having young players getting used to winning.


"The number one from Turkey [Marsel Ilhan] is ranked around 120 in the world and he's a tough player.
"Right now it's important that the guys get used to winning and beating teams like Turkey and I think they will do."

The two players now likely to be chosen to play singles appear to be Jamie Baker and James Ward, who were given wildcards into this week's Eastbourne ATP event.

They will join the doubles team of Ken Skupski and Colin Fleming.

Murray, who also missed the match against Lithuania in March, said he would remain available for future ties but will continue to make judgements on a match-by-match basis.

"I'm not by any means retiring from Davis Cup," he added.

I am disappointed that he is not going to be part of the team... but I accept his decision

GB captain Leon Smith

According to International Tennis Federation rules, Murray must play in a Davis Cup tie in the next two years to be eligible to particpate in the London Olympics.

Smith said he accepted Murray's decision not to play against Turkey.

"Obviously, I am disappointed that he is not going to be part of the team, because he is one of the best players in the world, but I accept his decision, and I believe that we still have the players available to win this tie, and to make the most of the opportunity."

Bogdanovic, who was recently stripped of funding by the LTA, has also declared himself unavailable for the Turkey tie.

Ilhan, who qualified for successive majors at the US Open and Australian Open, is Turkey's only recognisable international player.

Ergun Zorlu, 859 in the world, and Tuna Altuna, 924, are their only other players inside the world top 1000.

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see also
Murray beats Youzhny in warm-up
17 Jun 10 |  Tennis
Smith appointed Davis Cup captain
12 Apr 10 |  Tennis
Murray stands firm over Davis Cup
13 Apr 10 |  Tennis
Murray defends Davis Cup pull-out
03 Jan 10 |  Tennis
GB fall to humiliating Cup defeat
07 Mar 10 |  Tennis

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