Kyle Edmund says he is humbled at having become the British number one, a position he took up on Monday as the latest ATP rankings were released. Andy Murray‘s nine-month absence due to injury has allowed rising star Edmund to take up the domestic crown, becoming only the 12th player in the Open Era to be British No.1.
“It is humbling to become the British number one,” Edmund said on Sunday night, adding that he achieved the milestone “perhaps unwittingly, as Andy has dropped down in rankings due to his injury”.
“Proud as I am, I would have been much happier had Andy stayed healthy and occupied his place at the very top where he belongs.
“I wish Andy a speedy recovery and I hope to battle it out with him in a more legitimate fashion in years to come.”
British tennis has not had a serious battle for supremacy since the days of Tim Henman and Greg Rusedski in the early 2000s, as Murray has reigned ever since his rise to prominence, but Edmund’s emergence raises the prospects of a true rivalry – and perhaps one with a partisan flavour, considering Edmund’s status a true blue Englishman and Murray’s Scottish roots.
Edmund, who has been out for the past fortnight himself with a flu, added, “I’ll continue to work hard and represent Great Britain as best as I can. A bad dose of the flu virus kept me out in Buenos Aires and in Rio but I am back on track and excited to get back to it. I’m ready to play in Indian Wells [which starts on Monday] and Miami [19 March].”
The latest rankings sees Edmund move up one place to 24th, while Murray has slipped to 29th, his lowest ranking in eight years. However, the Scot has beaten his counterpart on the two occasions they’ve met on the ATP tour.