ANDY Murray was tipped yesterday to return to the top ten of world tennis once he proves his fitness after his hip surgery, writes Stewart Fisher. The bullish prediction came from the former World No 1's former coach Jonas Bjorkman, who has seen enough in the Scot's first three tournaments to suggest he could even be a stronger player than when he left.

“Absolutely he can get back to the top ten level," said Bjorkman. "There is no doubt. With the calibre of player, if he is healthy, I have no doubt he is going to be back to challenge the top five. Once a champion you are always a champion. He has had a problem with his hip for a long time and that has been throwing him off a bit, but there is no doubt that he can come back to that level and maybe play even better."

Tommy Haas, who recovered from hip surgery in 2010 to battle it out at the business end of Grand Slams, is another man who believes there is a lot of “hope and potential” for the Scot. The German, a former world No.2 who upset the odds by reaching the last eight of the French Open in 2013 after a catalogue of operations, says that advances in surgery are being made all the time.


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“With the best physios you can possibly have, with his mindset of training hard and being eager, there is a lot of hope and potential for him to return for singles," he said. "I am encouraged for him that he is going to give it a try, although it will maybe take a little bit more time before he feels comfortable doing it.

"You are always thinking about it a little bit, hoping it stays put, stays in place. Whether it is Grand Slams or not I don’t know; it is best of five and hard courts are a bit different, but I know he is doing the best he can to get back."