Andy Murray column: 'Beating Djokovic an incredible challenge'

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Murray 'no regrets' over last final

WIMBLEDON 2013

Venue:
All England Club, London
Date:
24 June - 7 July
Coverage:
Live on BBC One, BBC Two, BBC HD Channel, Red Button, BBC Radio 5 live, plus 10 live streams available on the BBC Sport website, tablet, mobile and connected TV.

Playing the number one in the world in the final of Wimbledon is certainly not easy, but it would make winning the title an even greater achievement.

It will be my seventh Grand Slam final and I know that in the previous six, and many of the semi-finals as well, I've been up against the best players ever.

That is incredibly challenging, but when I look back at the end of my career I'll be satisfied that I trained as hard as I possibly could and gave myself the chance to compete against these guys.

Is Sunday the biggest match of my career?

Well, winning Wimbledon is the pinnacle of the sport but I hope there are many more finals to come, so we'll have to wait until I stop playing to look back and say which were the biggest.

When you finish your career, these are the matches you will remember, but I don't think this is any bigger than last year's Wimbledon final or the US Open final. They're all big matches.

Reaching the final here feels a little bit different this time because it's something that I've experienced before. Last year it was completely new to me and the 48 hours before the match were pretty stressful.

I was pretty nervous the whole way through, whereas this time it's not quite so bad.

Novak Djokovic is someone I know very well, although our friendship is a bit more professional these days as we're in competition a lot. We've played against each other in many, many big matches and both won and lost, so there are unlikely to be many surprises out there for either of us.

He is extremely physically fit these days, more so than when he was younger, but the prospect of being out there for five or six hours with him isn't daunting. It's exactly what I spend so much time preparing for.

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It is difficult, it takes a lot of hard work to be able to last for that time, but these are the moments when all those hours of training will hopefully pay off. I also know that I've got four or five weeks until my next tournament, so I can leave absolutely everything out there.

In terms of the match itself, I simply need to do everything well against Novak. I can't have one or two parts of my game not working.

I need to play a very solid match from start to finish and fight for every single point, because Novak doesn't give you too many cheap games or mistakes. I just have to be stubborn and not give too much away.

I went through all the tactics with my team last night, and we will have another small chat before the match, but I prefer to go over the main details the night before so that I have time to actually process them, rather than doing it 10 minutes before we play.

I won't be on my own that much in the build-up to a big final, and after practising with my team at Aorangi Park on Saturday, I headed back home to spend some time with my girlfriend and the dogs. I also had a bit of a snooze because I had a pretty late finish after my semi-final on Friday.

After the quarter-final I treated myself to a chocolate bar, but there won't be any other indulgences before the final, don't worry. I'll eat and drink all the right things, nothing bad until after the match.

I don't actually like junk food these days anyway. I used to love it but, apart from the odd pizza, nowadays I'd prefer to go for a nice meal. If I did win on Sunday I'm sure I'd celebrate hard with the guys, but sushi would definitely feature in there somewhere.

That's a million miles from my thoughts right now though. The support I've had for the last few years at Wimbledon has been great and I hope to do everyone proud on Sunday.

Apparently the semi-final got the biggest television audience of the year so far, which is pretty amazing.

When you're on the court you don't think about that sort of thing, you're just aware of the people in the stadium, but obviously these events are shown all around the world and there are hundreds of millions of people watching.

It's a bit strange when you think about it, so maybe it's best that I don't.

As I said the other day, it's just a shame more people can't get on Centre Court to watch, but from what I hear the hill has been absolutely packed for the last couple of matches, with a great atmosphere.

It looks like the weather will be good on Sunday, so hopefully all those camping will have a decent night and be ready to get behind me in the final. Your support really can make the difference.

Andy Murray was talking to BBC Sport's Piers Newbery.

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