ATP Tour

Murray defends Mauresmo

Andy Murray (AFP)
Andy Murray (AFP)

Manila - Andy Murray has defended coach Amelie Mauresmo after former British number one Tim Henman said the Scot had not been "playing the right way" recently, questioning the partnership.

Henman claimed earlier this month that double Grand Slam winner Murray, who has slipped to sixth in the world rankings, was letting his opponents dictate matches and needed to play more offensively.

"(It's) certainly not true, her telling me to play defensively, so I don't agree with that," former world number two Murray told reporters in Manila.

The 2013 Wimbledon winner was in the Philippine capital to play in the International Premier Tennis League (IPTL), a faster-paced, television-friendly format of the sport,

He said Mauresmo always tells him to play "aggressively".

"That's the sort of mindset and style that I want to play," the 27-year-old added.

Murray in June turned to former female world number one Mauresmo, like him a Wimbledon champion, after predecessor Ivan Lendl brought an end to their hugely successful association.

The results have been less than spectacular, a fact Murray doesn't dispute -- although he insists it is too early to judge Mauresmo's impact.

"Sometimes this year it hasn't been possible, but you know we've only spent six or seven weeks together since Wimbledon," Murray said of Mauresmo.

"Yes, there was a few periods of the year where I played a couple of bad matches, where my level dropped and I wasn't expecting it."

"It wasn't my best season but it got better as the year went on," Murray said, adding he played "solid" at Wimbledon and the Australian Open.

After Murray was whitewashed by Roger Federer at the ATP Tour Finals, Henman said his friend had to be "proactive" and "more offensive" on court.

"I haven't seen them (Murray and Mauresmo) practise but, to me, I don't think he has been playing the right way," Henman said.

But Murray insisted his game was on the right track.

"The next sort of five, six weeks in the off-season and the buildup to the Australian Open I'll get to practise some things and work on some stuff," he said.

"Next year, hopefully, my consistency will be a little better."

In the IPTL Murray is playing for the Manila Mavericks team alongside women's world number two Maria Sharapova.

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