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Andy Murray has cast doubt over whether he will compete in the Australian Open as he battles back to fitness following recent back surgery.
The 26-year-old underwent an operation on a disc last month and now faces a race to be fit for the opening Grand Slam event after starting his rehabilitation last week.
Murray has been doing some light work but says it will be at least another month before he is back on the practice court.
The Scot is determined to make the Australian Open which begins in Melbourne in January but he also says he will not play unless he is 100 percent fit.
“I hope so, but I’m not going to come back unless I’m 100% fit. I’ve got a long way to go yet,” he said.
“I’ve been in the swimming pool and on the bike a little bit but it’s still going to be four or five weeks until I’m back on the tennis court hitting some balls.
“The rehab process is pretty tedious and long and I don’t want to come back too soon and have to start that process all over again. I’ll only come back when I’m 100% fit and I hope that’s at the beginning of the year.”
Murray first suffered from the problem in May when he was forced to pull out of the French Open.
He recovered in time to win Wimbledon but after losing in the quarter-finals of the US Open and helping Great Britain beat Croatia in the Davis Cup, the decision was taken to have the operation.