Murray & Broady to play doubles at Italian Open

ROME (Agencies): Andy Murray was a late addition into the doubles draw at the Italian Open as he and fellow Briton Liam Broady were entered as alternates.
Murray was not competing in the singles but was in Rome to practise against top players, including Novak Djokovic.

Scot Murray, 33, and Broady, 27, will take on Australians Max Purcell and Luke Saville in the first round.

In the singles, Britain’s Cameron Norrie beat Spain’s Roberto Carballes Baena 6-4 6-4 to reach round two.

British number one Johanna Konta gets her campaign under way later on Tuesday against Latvian Jelena Ostapenka.

Doubles gives Murray earlier return
Murray has not played since early March, having withdrawn from the Miami Open with a groin injury.

The former world number one is hoping to receive a wildcard to play a tournament in Geneva or Lyon next week.

He has entered French Open qualifying the following week as he does not know whether he will be offered a wildcard for the clay-court Grand Slam, which starts on 30 May.

Murray said the French Tennis Federation wants to see him competing before making a decision.

He has found himself with a chance of some earlier-than-expected match practice after he and Broady made it into the doubles draw in Rome following the withdrawal of Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz and Canada’s Felix Auger-Aliassime.

Norrie’s good run on clay continues
British number two Norrie is continuing his good clay-court form after reaching the final of the Estoril Open earlier this month, where he missed out on a first ATP title with a three-set defeat by Spain’s Albert Ramos-Vinolas.

Norrie, who pulled out of last week’s Madrid Masters because of blisters on his foot, has now strung together three wins in a row in Rome having come through two rounds of qualifying before this match against Caballes Baena.

The 25-year-old Briton raced into a 5-1 lead before losing back-to-back service games to allow the Spaniard back into the set.

He eventually took the set on his third set point and then once again made life harder for himself than it needed to be in the second set, breaking for a 5-3 lead before immediately losing his serve. He then sealed victory when Carballes Baena sent a forehand long in the next game.

Norrie will play another Spaniard, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, for a place in the third round.