ANDY MURRAY'S form on clay this season has been a revelation: 11 wins to no losses, including a straight-sets victory over the King of Clay, Rafael Nadal, has been hugely impressive, but it has come as little surprise to his mother, Judy.

The former Wimbledon champion is being touted as one of the favourites to win this year's French Open and Judy believes that rectifying his back issue has been the primary factor in enabling this remarkable winning run on the red dirt.

Loading article content

Murray underwent back surgery in September 2013 and struggled to recover his form for much of last season, but he is now reaping the rewards of going under the knife. "I think that Andy has always been able to play well on clay - he trained on it a lot when he was younger in Barcelona but I think that, over the last few years when he was having the problems with his back, he found it hard," his mother said. "On clay, you have to work so much harder to get power into the ball, the ball bounces higher and the rallies are longer and so the limitations that he had because of his back problems showed up more. I think if you have any kind of physical issue going on, it's very difficult to put it out of your mind and so he made the decision to have the back surgery to eliminate that problem. You don't recover quickly from something like a back surgery, but now he's in great shape."

Judy was appearing at a Cerno Capital event in Glasgow and told Herald Sport that she believes it is not only the improvements in her son's physical health that has allowed him to play so well this season, but also his mental state. "Andy had a shorter off-season this year than he's ever had before which I don't think did him any harm," she says. "I think people underestimate just how important it is to have time to rest your mind as well as your body. I actually think resting your mind is more important then resting your body because if you look at the demands of the tennis circuit, it's relentless; you need to recognise the importance of rest."

Murray is, as yet, undecided as to whether she will go to Paris to watch her son attempt to win his first French Open. "I got a bit fed-up with the travelling - I've been doing it for years and I'm really enjoying the things that I've been working on myself - the Miss Hits programme and the Tennis on the Road programme and I feel like I'm doing a lot of good with them," she says. "Andy has been playing at the French Open for so long - since the juniors in 2003 - it's a long time. He's got his whole team with him so I'm quite happy doing my own thing."