He has to cram 7 matches in 12 days, instead of in 14 days, because of the delayed start of US Open 2011. Is it really unfair for Andy Murray? Should he get some sort of compensation for it? http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2011/aug/30/andy-murray-us-open-2011 US Open 2011: Delayed start leaves Andy Murray on cram course for final The Scot faces an 'unfair' task of seven games in 12 days while Roger Federer can take a two-day break Kevin Mitchell at Flushing Meadows guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 30 August 2011 22.00 BST When Andy Murray beat Novak Djokovic in Cincinnati he said: "I can't wait for the US Open." Well, the US Open, apparently, can wait for Murray and his delayed start to the tournament, against the Indian Somdev Devvarman on Wednesday, could yet derail his chances of winning his first grand slam title. "Is it fair that one guy has to play seven matches in 14 days and one [has to do it in 12 days]," he said on Sky Sports when the draw was announced. "I don't quite get the logic behind it." The "one guy" he is referring to is Roger Federer, who played his first match in the cool of Monday evening. And "the logic" behind it is that, while it is tough to juggle 64 matches at the start of a two-week tournament, some players will inevitably be treated better than others. If Murray were to reach the final, his cycle of matches would have him play Wednesday, Friday, Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday. Federer's route, having started two days earlier, provides him with a two-day rest at some point before the concluding weekend. He would hope it is later rather than sooner. The random draw is not supposed to discriminate but the fixture list is very much in the gift of the host broadcaster, CBS, which wants stellar clashes at night and an exciting final weekend. What CBS gets is both men's semi-finals and the women's final on the Saturday – and the men's final on Sunday. That back-to-back finish is a given. But what might look like a merely inconvenient piece of scheduling earlier has consequences when it matters most. On Monday 24 men's singles matches were played but four from that side of the draw were played on Tuesday, including those of Rafael Nadal, who is on Murray's side of the draw, and Djokovic, who is on Federer's side. On Wednesday all the remaining first-round matches will be played and Murray, the fourth seed, is the most high-profile of the late starters. Murray has to clear his head and get on with the job of trying to beat Devvarman, then cope with the other challenges of the schedule. They have never met, although Devvarman did play Murray's long-time travelling hitting partner and part-time coach, Dani Vallverdu, so there will be no shortage of pre-match intelligence available. Devvarman is ranked No64 in the world, 60 places below Murray, and comes to New York with form that falls short of intimidating. He lost in the qualifiers for the Cincinnati Open, which Murray won on a retirement by Djokovic when 6-4, 3-0 up. Before that Devvarman won one match in Washington, then lost to the unpredictable but dangerous Marcos Baghdatis, undone 6-0 in the second set; in Los Angeles he also went out in the first round, to the young American Ryan Sweeting. He has a further eight first-round defeats against his name this year. To put Murray out at the first time of asking in a major would constitute a seismic shock. The draw aside, Murray is in good spirits. "I feel much better than I did about [his form and attitude] maybe at the beginning of the year," he told the BBC, reflecting on that dispiriting brace of defeats on the American hard courts. "I obviously struggled a lot with it after Australia. I'm starting to understand that, rather than looking at these guys and thinking, 'It's such a tough era to be in', I'm relishing the challenge. "I've always enjoyed playing against [Federer, Nadal and Djokovic]. My goals are to be No1 in the world and to win grand slams. It's such a difficult thing to do but it all adds up – all these things will go to making you a better player. "I lost to Nadal in two tournaments this year and Djokovic in Australia. I'm getting to the later stages very often right now. It's about finding a way to get through those last couple of matches. I've spoken to some people. I'm getting as much help as I can and hopefully I will get there." It is just that, in getting there, he would rather not have to cram his matches into 12 days while "one guy" gets a break.