John McEnroe calls for Wimbledon to dedicate a statue to Andy Murray… as two-time champion sweats fitness to play in his swansong tournament after spinal cyst surgery

  • 2013 saw Murray become the first British man to win in SW19 since Fred Perry 
  • The 37-year-old is in a race against time to play in tournament after surgery 
  • Murray retired against Jordan Thompson at Queen’s Club on Wednesday

John McEnroe has reiterated calls for a statue of Andy Murray to be unveiled at Wimbledon to honour the triple Grand Slam winner’s achievements in the sport.

It still isn’t known whether Murray, 37, will be fit to compete at this year’s Championship, which begin on Monday and look set to be his last, after undergoing surgery on a spinal cyst on Saturday.

There has long been talk over a statue of the Scot in the grounds of the All England Club, where in 2013 he became the first British man to win Wimbledon since Fred Perry in 1936. In McEnroe’s mind, the right outcome is clear.

‘If I was making that decision, I would say absolutely yes because that’s a long drought, 77 years,’ said McEnroe, a three-time champion at SW19, who will be part of the BBC’s coverage once again this summer.

‘He’s absolutely changed the way people look at British tennis. He’s one of the greatest competitors that I’ve ever seen play tennis.

‘It’d be well deserved and it’d be awesome, because two of his three Grand Slam wins (2013 and 2016) were at Wimbledon plus the Olympics (gold medal in 2012).

Andy Murray became the first British men’s champion since Fred Perry to lift the trophy at Wimbledon in 2013

John McEnroe has called for the two-time champion to be formally honoured by the AELTC

John McEnroe has called for the two-time champion to be formally honoured by the AELTC

Murray could yet skip this year's tournament - his potential swansong - after undergoing surgery following retirement at Queen's (pictured)

Murray could yet skip this year’s tournament – his potential swansong – after undergoing surgery following retirement at Queen’s (pictured)

‘He was part of the ‘big four’ and he finished 2016 as the best player in the world.

‘It’s unfortunate that injuries (mean) you don’t hear about him the same way he did before. It is like the ‘big three’ now.

‘There’s the saying that I’ve used many times: “The older I get, the better I used to be”. And unfortunately, when you have injuries, it’s pretty damn hard, if not impossible to get to that level where you were.’

Earlier this month the All England Club’s CEO, Sally Bolton, explained the decision of how to mark Murray’s achievements at Wimbledon laid in his hands.

She said: ‘We have got a range of paths to our plans for Andy. At the right point in time we will make those relevant announcements.

‘But it is certainly for Andy to make the decision for when we trigger those plans.’

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