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Can Murray prove me right?

In a post from last summer I stated that I thought Andy Murray would be a grand slam winner in the not too distant future. His form in the Australian open so far has done nothing to make me change my mind. He’s looked formidable in every match he’s played and is now to play Rafael Nadal in the quarter finals.

Unfortunately, a certain Roger Federer is also looking in very good form, particularly during his 3 set dismantling of Lleyton Hewitt. There is nothing Murray can do about the way Federer is playing and he has to ensure that he gives no credence to things that are outside of his control. All focus should be on the parts of the game he has influence over, namely how he plays and approaches the game.

I once had a rugby coach that used to say ‘concentrate on the performance and the result will look after itself’. The number of tries and points we could score was influenced by external factors; the other team. However, we knew that if we executed our set piece the way we wanted, made our tackles and played our quick offload game with limited errors we would win. A common example of the opposite can be seen every saturday on match of the day. It always makes me laugh when I see football managers blaming the referee after a game for their loss. By blaming an ‘external locus of causality’, it takes the result out of his players’ hands and actually serves to reduce their intrinsic motivation (the will to something because you want to, rather than because of some external reward).

If Murray sees the result as an internal locus of causality, or in his own hands, then my status as fortune teller could well be cemented.

Neil Welch

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