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Andy Murray to put baby ahead of Slam joy

By Steve Simpson

Published 05/01/2016

Winning duo: Heather Watson and Andy Murray saw off France
Winning duo: Heather Watson and Andy Murray saw off France

British No.1 Andy Murray says he would leave the Australian Open early if his wife, Kim, goes into labour with their first child.

The first Grand Slam of the 2016 season runs from January 18-31 and the baby is due in mid-February.

Asked if he would withdraw from the final in such a scenario, the 28-year-old Scot said: "I'm going to fly home. I'd be way more disappointed winning the Australian Open and not being at the birth of my child."

Murray, a double Grand Slam winner, said the current plan is to compete in the Australian Open and take February off to spend time with Kim and the baby.

Murray and Heather Watson, meanwhile, won the deciding mixed doubles rubber on a tie-break as Great Britain started their Hopman Cup campaign with a 2-1 victory against France.

Murray was successful in his singles tie with Kenny De Schepper but Heather Watson's three-set defeat to Caroline Garcia ensured the doubles would be pivotal.

And the British pair prevailed after recovering from a second-set wobble to win 6-2 5-7 10-6.

After easing through the first set and breaking early in the second, it appeared Britain were coasting to victory but Murray had his serve broken in the fifth game and Watson in the 11th as France took it to a first-to-10 tie-break.

But the British pair recovered and never trailed in the decider as they made a winning start in the round-robin stage.

Murray had earlier beaten De Schepper 6-2 6-2 in 58 minutes, breaking his opponent in the first and fifth game of each set.

After his singles victory, Murray said: "I played well. Everything was working pretty well. I was able to finish a lot of the points up at the net.

"It's quite a quick surface here so if you can get the first strike in, in the rallies, it's quite easy to stay on top of the point.

"I enjoy it here and that's why I keep coming back. I'll be back next year as well."

Britain are next in action tomorrow against Nick Kyrgios and Daria Gavrilova's Australia Green.

In the day's other game, Serena Williams was sidelined with a knee injury and her replacement Vicky Duval was unable to prevent the United States losing 2-1 to Ukraine.

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