The Queen’s Club has reserved Andy Murray a wild card entry for the 2019 Fever-Tree Championships, tournament organisers announced on Tuesday.
The 31-year-old is recovering from hip surgery and has yet to set a date for a potential return, having last played competitively at the Australian Open in January.
The Fever-Tree Championships run from June 17 to 23, so could offer Murray a chance of some grass-court action ahead of Wimbledon should he feel fit enough.
— Fever-Tree Championships (@QueensTennis) May 7, 2019
Murray had the hip resurfacing operation in London in January and says he is now pain free, although he has only been hitting balls from a stationary position so far.
The Scot could also yet use a protected ranking to enter Wimbledon, who have set an official deadline of June 18 to apply for a wild card for this year’s championships.
A statement from the Fever-Tree Championships read: “A wild card is being held in reserve for Murray, who will let tournament director Stephen Farrow know nearer the time of the event if he is fit enough to take it.”
Murray said before the Australian Open that he planned to retire after this summer’s Wimbledon, but also revealed that the tournament in Melbourne could prove to be his last event.
British number one Kyle Edmund and compatriot Cameron Norrie, meanwhile, have both been confirmed on the final entry list at Queen’s, which will have plenty of interest in the 32-strong draw from the top ATP Tour players.
Last year’s Wimbledon finalist Kevin Anderson and world number eight Juan Martin Del Potro are set to play, along with defending champion Marin Cilic, Nick Kyrgios, Stan Wawrinka, Grigor Dimitrov, Milos Raonic, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Australian Open semi-finalist Lucas Pouille.
Tournament director Stephen Farrow said: “This year’s Fever-Tree Championships player field is full of stars of the present and the future.
“We are delighted to see top-10 players Kevin Anderson and Juan Martin Del Potro join a line-up that already includes Grand Slam champions Marin Cilic and Stan Wawrinka, and a group of young players that we anticipate being stars of the sport for many years to come.”
There will also be a doubles title at Queen’s Club, along with the first grass-court wheelchair ranking tournament outside of Wimbledon and the inaugural Paul Hutchins Trophy, an 18-and-under match between Great Britain and the United States of America.
As well as Murray, organisers will hope either Rafael Nadal or Novak Djokovic takes a wild card into the tournament.
Nadal has entered for the past three years only to pull out, once with a wrist injury and twice after winning the French Open, while Djokovic took a wild card last year after losing in the quarter-finals in Paris and reached the final.