Andy Murray confirms participation in Rafa Nadal Open as he returns to Challenger Tour

File photo of Andy Murray, who has added the European Open at Antwerp to his calendar
File photo of Andy Murray, who has added the European Open at Antwerp to his calendar
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Andy Murray will play on the Challenger Tour for the first time in 14 years next week.



The Scot's entry into the Rafa Nadal Open at the Spaniard's academy on his home island of Majorca was confirmed on Thursday.

The former world number one has lost both of the singles matches he has played since returning from January's hip surgery and, with the US Open starting on Monday, is dropping down a level as he builds up his match fitness.

Murray, now ranked 329, was beaten by Richard Gasquet in Cincinnati last week in his first singles contest since the Australian Open, then lost to Tennys Sandgren at the Winston-Salem Open on Monday.

He will return to ATP level at the Zhuhai Championships beginning on September 23 and has also committed to the China Open and the European Open in Antwerp.

Murray's last appearance at Challenger level came in Mons in Belgium in October 2005. Only 18, the Scot had reached his first ATP Tour final the week before in Bangkok and retired in the quarter-finals.

Murray won two Challenger titles earlier the same year but progressed quickly through that level, finishing 2005 ranked 64.