Andy Murray’s preparations for the Australian Open could not have gone any better after continuing his good form with a victory in the Brisbane International.
Murray was rarely troubled throughout the tournament and swept aside Ukraine’s Alexandr Dolgopolov 6-1, 6-4 in the final.
It was the first tournament Murray went into with his new team that includes coach Ivan Lendl and things are looking good for the Scot as the Australian Open in Melbourne approaches at the end of the month.
The Scot has been seeded fourth for the event behind Novak Djokovic, Rafa Nadal and Roger Federer but there is every reason to think Murray can make it third time lucky following final defeats in each of the past two seasons.
The preparations of Nadal and Federer at the Qatar Open were far from ideal Frenchman Gael Monfil knocking out Nadal and defending champion Federer pulling out with a back injury on Friday.
Murray is currently third in the Australian Open betting at 9/2 with last year’s winner Djokovic the 11/8 favourite.
Federer is second at 7/2 to win his fifth Australian Open title and should not be discounted following a very decent couple of months.
Nadal is 6/1 to add to his 2009 title but if you like your odds a little longer then Jo-Wilfried Tsonga looks tempting at 16/1.
The Frenchman defeated compatriot Gael Monfils 7-5, 6-3 to claim the Qatar Open and looks in very decent form.
However, Murray continues to look impressive and there is a growing sense that this could be the year in which he breaks his Grand Slam hoodoo – and he won’t get a better opportunity than at the Australian Open.