Andy Murray (50/1 – Australian Open Outright) says he’s “really excited” to have been given the chance to play in next month’s Australian Open after the British star received a wildcard for the main draw in Melbourne.

Murray will be back in action Down Under for the first major of 2022 after organisers decided to invite the three-time Grand Slam champion.

The 34-year-old has had ongoing injury issues for the past three years and, at one point in 2019, thought he would have to retire from tennis due to a persistent hip problem.

However, he has battled back in 2021 and, after unexpectedly making the third round of Wimbledon this summer, Murray impressed in the recent Mubadala World Tennis exhibition Championship.

He proved his fitness by beating fellow Briton Dan Evans in straight sets in Abu Dhabi before also seeing off Rafael Nadal, himself battling back from injury, in similar fashion.

Even though Murray lost the Mubadala World Tennis final to Andrey Rublev, he looks to be in the best shape for some time and has now been given the opportunity to shine in Australia next month.

The Scot has been a runner-up at Melbourne Park five times in the past – in 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2016 – and says he’s looking forward to trying to rediscover something like that sort of form in the New Year.

“I’m really excited to be back playing at the Australian Open,” he said. “I’ve had some great times in Australia playing in front of the amazing crowds and I can’t wait to step back out on court at Melbourne Park.”

Tournament director Craig Tiley added: “Andy is renowned for his fighting spirit, passion and love of the game and I’m delighted to welcome him back to Melbourne in January.”

Reigning Aussie Open champion Novak Djokovic is the 6/4 favourite to win the tournament in 2022, ahead of Daniil Medvedev (5/2) and Alexander Zverev (9/2).

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