Top 10 Ways Murray Has Improved In 2016
Infosys ATP Beyond The Numbers shows the biggest ways Murray has improved
Andy Murray is improving here, there and everywhere.
Murray is on track to have the best season of his illustrious career, ramping up performance in multiple areas. An Infosys ATP Beyond The Numbers analysis uncovered 10 key areas of Murray’s game that are all performing better in 2016 than 2015. These metrics don’t necessarily stand out to the naked eye when you watch Murray play, but they pop off the stats sheet with their significance to winning more matches.
1. Breaking From 15-40 (40 per cent to 63 per cent)
Murray has greatly improved in breaking his opponent’s serve when he gets them into a 15-40 hole. It’s one thing in tennis to create break points, but the ability to convert them goes a long way towards winning matches.
2. Total Points Won (54 per cent to 55 per cent)
Year in and year out, the gold standard for the No. 1 player in the Emirates ATP Rankings is to win 55 per cent of all points for an entire season. Murray has reached that elite level in 2016, showing he is already qualified to be World No. 1. Djokovic has been at an incredibly high 56 per cent the past two seasons.
3. Holding Serve From 0-30 (40 per cent to 47 per cent)
This has been a real hole in Murray’s game that is improving. Consider in 2015 that Djokovic held 63 per cent of the time from 0-30 and Roger Federer held at a similar rate, 58 per cent, and you get an idea of how much Murray was underperforming here. Getting to 50 per cent by the end of the season is a very attainable goal.
4. Breaking From 15-30 (38 per cent to 50 per cent)
This is another big jump for the Brit. Instead of letting his opponents back into the game, he is securing a crucial break better than ever.
5. Holding Serve When Serving With New Balls (79 per cent to 88 per cent)
Murray has worked diligently to improve all aspects of his serve, including the power he puts on it and his ability to hold serve in a variety of situations. When serving with new balls, which fly just a little quicker through the air, he's found another way to up his game.
6. Average Match Time (One hour and 57 minutes to two hours and 10 minutes)
Time on the court in a match is golden. It’s where you figure things out. It’s where the battle and the improvement occurs. By going deeper into tournaments and playing more elite players, match time naturally goes up. His education in the Centre Court classroom is improving.
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7. Second-Serve Points Won (52 per cent to 54 per cent)
Murray’s second serve has never really been discussed as a weapon in his game – until now. His second-serve winning percentage is as high as it has ever been in his career, mainly due to his ability to put more on it this season.
8. Return Games Won (31 per cent to 36 per cent)
Murray is second in the world this season in return games won, only trailing Rafael Nadal. We already knew the Brit was an outstanding returner, but now he is breaking at an even better clip.
9. Break Points Saved (64 per cent to 66 per cent)
Break points are golden nuggets that have a heavy influence on the outcome of a match and the legacy of a career. Any incremental improvement here means more matches won.
10. Holding After Breaking Serve (86 per cent to 89 per cent)
The old saying is that a break is not a break until you hold in the following game. Murray is getting better at not letting opponents steal the break right back.
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