French Open: Leon Smith confident Andy Murray will soon rediscover form

Leon Smith and Andy Murray
Andy Murray was central to Leon Smith's Great Britain team winning the Davis Cup in 2015
French Open
Venue: Roland Garros, Paris Dates: 28 May- 11 June
Coverage: Listen to live radio commentary and follow text coverage of selected matches on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra and online.

Andy Murray's former coach Leon Smith, now Britain's Davis Cup captain, says his former charge is "a terrific champion" who could be ready to "light it up" in his next three tournaments.

Murray has failed to reach the quarter-finals of any big tournament in 2017.

But Smith claims it would not surprise him if the world number one went "very, very deep" at the French Open.

"He's had some setbacks with injury and illness but his thirst for winning more Slams is always there," he said.

"I think that's what champions do well, they will find a way.

"The belief never goes away, confidence might go up and down but at the French Open, he can navigate his way through the early rounds and that will give him some confidence, some court time, and once he starts getting into the tournament then those wheels can really start to get into motion."

Murray, 30, hit the top of the rankings late last year but has struggled with form and fitness in recent months, yet Smith has faith in his fellow Scot to turn things around, beginning in Paris.

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French Open: Leon Smith not fazed by Andy Murray's dip in form

"I don't panic at all about this," Smith told BBC Scotland.

"He's a terrific champion, he's got an unbelievable mindset and he's got a great team around him.

"I can see him working his way into this tournament and (it would not) surprise me to see him go very, very deep here.

"We know when it gets to the grass that he is playing very well on that surface. If you think the next three tournaments for him are the French Open, Queens, Wimbledon - he's ready to light it up."

Murray was the beaten finalist at Roland Garros last year, going on to win Queens for a fifth time and securing his second Wimbledon title.

Ivan Lendl (right) on the practice court with Andy Murray
Lendl (right) is by Murray's side in Paris for the first time since January's Australian Open

Smith feels Murray will benefit from the input of coach Ivan Lendl, especially in terms of building his confidence, when he begins his French Open tilt on Tuesday with a first-round match against the world number 73, Andrey Kuznetsov.

The Russian, 26, arrives in Paris following a run to the semi-finals of the Geneva Open and a close match with eventual winner Stan Wawrinka, beating clay court specialist Albert Ramos-Vinolas along the way.

Murray, who has prevailed in two previous meetings with Kuznetsov, will certainly hope the women's tournament does not provide an omen for how the men's draw might pan out.

The women's world number one and top seed Angelique Kerber, like Murray, had a Russian opponent in the first round. Kerber lost in straight sets to Ekaterina Makarova, the first time the women's top seed has lost in the first round of the French Open.

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