Andy Murray battles blisters at Australian Open – video
Close-up of Scot's wounded foot draws gasps from crowd during final – graphic content
ANDY MURRAY refused to blame his blisters for defeat in the final of the Australian Open against Novak Djokovic on Sunday, but few were left in any doubt about the pain he was in after the crowd was treated to a lurid TV close-up of the injury as he took a medical time out.
With the match poised at one set all Murray required treatment on his right foot. As his doctor set to work on his wounds the cameras homed in and the TV audience, as well those inside the Rod Laver Arena, got a detailed view.
Many of those in the crowd were unable to contain their disgust and there was a collective gasp as the close-up shot appeared on the big screen. Murray's discomfort was clear as the injury was dressed and pain-killing spray was applied to his foot.
When asked afterwards about the blisters the British number one insisted that he had not been unduly hampered. "That had no bearing on the result," he said. "It just hurts a bit when you run. I very rarely get blisters. But 90 per cent of the players will have played this tournament with some sort of blister or problem."
Murray did hint that the extra day that Djokovic had to prepare for the match could have had an impact on the result, but he did not sound bitter.
"He handles defeat so much better than he once did," noted The Guardian. "Murray played down the inconvenience of having to get through the final two sets with his right foot wrapped to guard against further irritation to blisters that needed pain-freezing spray. Nor did he blame the scheduling and the rigours of a four hour semi-final against Federer, while Djokovic had an extra day's rest after a veritable stroll in his semi-final against David Ferrer."
He and his coach Ivan Lendl even appeared sanguine about events in Melbourne, and the Daily Telegraph said that nether sounded "overly disheartened, by the performance or the result".