Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic may be two of the best tennis players in the world and earn millions upon millions pounds and dollars of cash per year, but they can still be left red-faced and somewhat uncomfortable in their spare time.
This year’s Australian Open finalists are in action for the ATP 500 event in Dubai and will be expected to meet in the tournament’s latter stages despite a strong field which also features the likes of Roger Federer and Tomas Berdych.
Despite the level of competition, both have been spotted letting their hair down in the Middle East – but they haven’t looked as relaxed as they could be.
Murray has had an eventful time since the end of the 2014 season. The Scottish-born star’s return to form and subsequent ascension back up the world rankings ladder has coincided with some big news in his private life; he recently announced that he is set to marry his long-term partner Kim Sears this year.
The 27-year-old will be looking forward to marital bliss, therefore it is no surprise that he was left with a wholly unimpressed look on his face as he received a ‘special dance’ at a dinner event for all the Dubai Open participants.
Article continues below
It isn’t quite as bad as it sounds, this was no seedy strip club, but the world no.3 was treated to a belly-dance from a traditionally-scantily-dressed performer who was keen to grind in close quarters to Murray.
Then again, he doesn’t look happy at the best of times so who knows?...
At the same event, Murray’s conqueror in the Melbourne Major, Djokovic, was also treated to his own sample of ‘culture’ – but again, he didn’t look massively enamoured either.
To be fair, the world no.1 had good reason to look a tad scared too. The same dancers decided it would be a good idea to rest a machete on the Serbian star’s head. He moves around as quick as a cat on the court, but he remained deadly still in this episode. As a precaution, hoping for a bit of divine protection, Djokovic held his hands together as if he was saying a prayer.
Hopefully both men will shake off these experiences in time for the tournament remainder. Neither Djokovic nor Murray have dropped a set yet, and it’s especially more impressive for the latter to do so considering his coach, Amelie Mauresmo, hasn’t been able to make the trip and keep a watchful eye.
Who will be celebrating come the end of the week though? The final will be on Sunday and the winner will appreciate a good momentum boost ahead of the clay-court season which starts soon.