Infuriated Jamie Murray claims 'people wanna kill us' as star demands ATP action

Jamie Murray launched a scathing attack on the way doubles tennis has been marketed and scheduled in recent years. The seven-time Grand Slam champion ripped into the ATP for failing to promote the doubles while claiming that some people “wanna kill us”. An “infuriated” Murray revealed that he sent a document to the tour with his own suggestions for the doubles as he claimed officials were underestimating their value.

After 20 years on the tour, Jamie Murray is a veteran. The elder Murray brother has reached the top of the rankings, lifted two men’s doubles Grand Slam titles and five Major trophies in the mixed. And the 38-year-old has now been left “infuriated” after watching doubles get left behind, taking matters into his own hands by confronting the ATP Tour with his own proposals.

It comes as the ATP is undertaking a review into the doubles, with claims that the future of the sport is uncertain. And Murray believes that the tour could easily boost the game instead of tossing it to one side. “I don’t know what the outcome will be, but I think it’s not a great path we’re going down now because it feels like some people wanna kill us, I don’t know,” he told Tennis Majors.

“It just feels like it’s slowly going downhill and eventually, people are just like ‘It sucks, we don’t need it. It just doesn’t do anything for us.’ Whereas, actually, with a bit of care and attention, you could elevate it and bring more value to the Tour. I sent a document to them with all the issues I see. And things that don’t cost money to change.”

Among his proposals are changes to schedules – a Sunday to Friday run at the seven-day events and a condensed timetable at the longer Masters 1000s The current doubles No. 16 explained: “That’s also valuable for the tournament to keep them longer because the fans will come and watch. There’s a lot of little kinks that could be smoothed out with a bit of care and attention.

“Scheduling bothers me so much at some of the events. It’s giving it no chance to thrive. Right now, it feels to me that it’s kind of set up for failure. No one, from a Tour perspective, seems to be thinking of making it a more valuable proposition for us, for the Tour, for the fans, for streaming, for television. That’s what bugs me a lot.”

A member of the ATP Player Council from 2016 to 2019, Murray said he had approached some other players about the issues in the past and called on his colleagues to come together and demand change. And he hoped that his scheduling ideas stopped the number of singles players from pulling out of their doubles matches, giving way for too many walkovers.

“Guys, how are you promoting doubles as a sport when you literally do not post anything on your social media? These days, everyone consumes their sport on social media. So again you’re killing it, you’re not giving it a chance, and that, for me, is really sad because it doesn’t cost anyone anything to post this stuff.”

It remains to be seen what comes of the doubles review and whether the ATP will listen to Murray’s suggestions. But the 32-time career title winner believes that it could be cheap and easy for the tour to elevate the game. “I know the potential is there to be better than what it currently is. At least, create the best product you possibly can and see how it goes. At least, try,” he pleaded.