Andy Murray admits he is an underdog at Australian Open

Andy Murray celebrates victory over Go Soeda in their first round match of the Australian Open on January 14, 2014
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British number one Andy Murray admits that he is a big outsider to win this year's Australian Open.

British number one Andy Murray has admitted that he is a big outsider to win this year's Australian Open.

The double Grand Slam champion had surgery on a back injury in September and was then sidelined until December as he recovered from the successful operation.

His return to major competition has gone fairly well so far. He has dropped just one set en route to reaching the quarter-finals at Melbourne Park, but Spain's Feliciano Lopez is the only seed that the Scot has faced to date.

Things will be much harder for Murray from here on in. In order to reach the semis he must beat four-time winner Roger Federer, who defeated 2008 finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-3 7-5 6-4 yesterday.

If he is able to overcome Federer, then he will most probably be up against world number one Rafael Nadal in the last four.

Murray told BBC Sport: "I can't honestly say my expectations are as high as if I'd been playing for the last four months.

"It's been a good effort so far to get to the quarter-finals of a Slam this soon after surgery, so I'm happy with that.

"But I'm not far away from winning the event. Anyone that's in the quarters is close."

Murray has won 11 of his 20 previous encounters with Federer, including beating the Swiss 6-4 6-7 6-3 6-7 6-2 in the semi-finals of the Australian Open in 2013.

The majority of the UK bookmakers have Murray as the fourth favourite to win the 2014 title Down Under, behind Novak Djokovic, Nadal and Federer.

Switzerland's Roger Federer celebrates after victory in his men's singles match against France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on day eight of the 2014 Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne on January 20, 2014
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ATP RankingsPoints
1Scotland flag Andy Murray7,750
2Spain Rafael Nadal7,555
3Switzerland Roger Federer7,145
4Switzerland Stanislas Wawrinka5,780
5Serbia Novak Djokovic5,325
6Croatia Marin Cilic5,155
7Alexander Zverev4,470
8Austria Dominic Thiem4,030
9Japan Kei Nishikori3,285
10Canada Milos Raonic3,230
11Bulgaria Grigor Dimitrov3,070
12France Jo-Wilfried Tsonga2,770
13Belgium David Goffin2,560
14Spain Roberto Bautista Agut2,425
15Czech Republic Tomas Berdych2,390
16United States Jack Sock2,335
17Pablo Carreno Busta2,305
18Lucas Pouille2,220
19United States John Isner2,110
20United States Sam Querrey2,060