In the summer of 1936, Fred Perry stepped out onto the hallowed lawn of Wimbledonâ€™s centre court knowing only a win stood between him and tennisâ€™ greatest prize. A straight sets demolition of German superstar, Gottfried von Cramm, thrust Perry into the history books as he was crowned champion at SW19 for the 3rd consecutive year. The last British man to win at the All England Club for 77 years.
â€œAndy has had many big breakthroughs and I think it is phenomenal how quickly his game is improving. I really think he can be Number 1 in the world.â€?
Andy Murray, born 15th of May 1987, is a Scottish professional tennis player hailing from the small village of Dunblane; located in the highland region of Stirling. Born into a family with rich sporting history, it was inevitable that Murray himself would take up a keen interest in sport from such a young age – picking up his first tennis racket when he was just two years old. Aged 12, Murray earned his reward for years of hard work on the court as he won his first serious tournament as an amateur - the Miami Orange Bowl. His win in Florida would prove to be the springboard for further success as, at the age of 15, he moved to Spain to train full time at the Barcelona-based, Sanchez-Casal tennis academy. It would then only take 2 years for Murray to show his potential as a future champion as he took the Boy’s singles title at the Junior US Open. Following his success at Flushing Meadows, an 18-year old Murray turned professional and quickly
climbed the rankings - ending 2007 as the highest ranked Briton and inside the ATP’s Top 10. Murray would go on to enhance his growing reputation as a top player by winning his first ATP Masters 1000 title at the 2008 Cincinnati Masters and triumphing later in the year at the Madrid Masters. He would end 2008 on a high by reaching the final of his first Grand Slam, the first Briton to do so for more than a decade, eventually losing out to Roger Federer in straights sets. Murray quickly became recognised as one of the “Big Four” in the sport - alongside the likes of Nadal, Federer and Djokovic, but continued his poor record in Grand Slam finals, losing at the Australian Open on two occasions and then again at Wimbledon in 2012.
â€œIt was not to be. Andy Murray had never played seven times in a tournament before and his final outing here at the US Open last night proved a match too far. The Scotâ€™s first appearance in a Grand Slam final ended in disappointment, but at least he had the consolation of knowing he had lost to the player he regards as the greatest the game has ever seen. Roger Federer has had his most difficult season since winning his first Grand Slam title at
Wimbledon 5 years ago, but the former world No 1 had been showing signs over the last fortnight that he is rediscovering the form that once gave him such an aura of invincibility. Murray however, never played with the panache he had shown in beating 5-time Grand Slam champion Nadal and still, Fred Perry remains the last British man to have won a major, 72 years ago.â€?
â€œFederer rolls past Murray to win 13th Grand Slam title.â€? 7
“Federer outclasses Murray in Australian Open final.”
â€œRoger Federer inflicted a straight sets defeat on Andy Murray in the final of the Australian Open to deny the Scot a maiden grand slam title. The 28-yearold Swiss national won his 16th grand slam title and fourth at Melbourne Park 6-3 6-4 7-6 in two hours and 41 minutes. Murray was made to play for an anxious start as he allowed the world number one to coast through the opening two sets before finally providing stubborn resistance in the
third. But after grabbing the first break in the third set Murray immediately relinquished his advantage and after an enthralling tie-break, when the Scot wasted five set points, his challenge was ended. He lacked the class of Federer, whose performance offered little reason to hope Murray could end Britainâ€™s 74year wait for a male champion.â€?
“Andy Murray handed a vibrant, hungry Novak Djokovic his second Australian Open title today in two hours of truly wretched tennis. At the third time of asking, the Scot could not win a set in a grand slam final. This was one of Murray’s poorest displays in a long-time, perhaps on a par with his defeat by Stanislas Wawrinka in the US Open last year. He moved with the bounce of a sloth, served meekly and lacked any of the vim that had carried
him this far. Whatever ailed Murray he employed the Rafa Nadal no-defence defence, refusing to blame any injury. He shouted at his mother, swore at the seagulls and whatever conversation he was having with himself would have been a very black dialogue indeed. But his passion was misdirected; it was not his team who were losing this final; it was him.”
“Andy Murray crushed by Novak Djokovic in Australian Open Final.”
â€œMisery for Murray as fantastic Federer takes seventh Wimbledon title.â€?
“Against an inspired Federer, Murray snatched the first set, but could not claim the victory that so many British sports fans were praying for. We came looking for a new Fred Perry, but we left saluting a new William Renshaw - the 19th-century legend whose seven Wimbledon titles have now been matched by Federer. At the matches close, Murray was invited to do a lap of honour alongside his conqueror, but sensibly declined. He had already won
the crowd over to the extent that, as Federer prepared to serve for the match, Centre Court rang out to a football-style chant of “Andy, Andy.” Murray seems forever to be on the verge of greatness. He has reached a grand slam final in four of the last five seasons, losing three times to Federer and once to Djokovic. But at least he won a set. He is getting closer. He really is.”
It had taken over 6 hours of Grand Slam finals tennis for Andy Murray to win a single set, let alone come close to ending the hoodoo that has cursed British tennis for nearly a century. But this time, something was different. Murrayâ€™s swift 6-4 win in the first set against Roger Federer was a real breakthrough. Despite eventually losing at SW19, Murray had finally showed his potential to win. Even he started to believe.
“I’m getting closer.”
Murrayâ€™s hard fought loss to Federer in the 2012 Wimbledon final would prove to be the making of the Scot as he soon followed that humiliating defeat by sweeping aside the same man in resounding fashion. A straight sets victory in front of the London crowd, on the same court that had bested him only a month before deservedly gave Murray the Olympic Gold and the first major triumph of his career.
For some, an Olympic title would be a career defining moment, but not Andy Murray. He wanted to succeed where others, for 76 years, had tried and failed. His scintillating form continued through to the US Open in late August and just like in 2008, Murray sailed through to the final. In 2008, Murray was still a boy, but here a more mature, more powerful player proved too tall a task for Djokovic. Murray made history.
Murray was now in previously untested waters - two major titles, ranked Number 2 in the world and in the form of his life. With Olympic Gold and the US Open now under his belt, Murrayâ€™s next task would be to win the seemingly impossible. Wimbledon has been both a mecca and a graveyard for British tennis; 77 years and counting without a home victory, but not since Perry have we had a player like Andy Murray.
Rapid across the court, strong behind the baseline and a deft touch at the net - if anybody was capable of ending the hurt, it was him. A back injury forced him out of the French Open, but he returned in time for the third major of the year and once again, the Scot steamrolled into the final and now just Novak Djokovic stood in his way. The buzz around centre court was like no other - were we about to witness greatness?
“The waiting is over. Andy Murray is the Wimbledon champion. And you simply, cannot, give more. A performance of supreme control, power, touch and most of all; resilience. We’ve known he’s a
champion, but to come through that. I mean the strength of character again and again. He demonstrates it and he deserves this victory. He’s the Wimbledon champion, he’s the US Open champion.”
â€œHe was courageous and extremely bold, not letting the pressure unsettle him. It takes a special person to win a Wimbledon title, and Andy Murray is undoubtedly special.â€?
1 Andy Murray became the 36th British man to win the Wimbledon crown and the first to take the title since 1936 when compatriot, Fred Perry, thrashed Gottfried von Cramm.
4 Murray’s win over Novak Djokovic was his third grass court tournament win in succession; adding to his Olympic Gold and victory at Queen’s Club prior to Wimbledon.
2 As well as the first British winner for 77 years, Murray’s demolition of Djokovic was the first Wimbledon victory for a Scottish player - male or female - for 117 years.
5 Murray became the first British man for 77 years to be reigning champion at multiple Grand Slam tournaments in the same year.
3 Murray’s journey to the 2013 Wimbledon final was his 7th in all grand slams and his 2nd victory in his last 3 visits to the final day - both at the expense of Djokovic.
6 Following his victory at the All England Club, Murray became the most successful British player in Grand Slam history - taking his total match wins in majors to 109.
Published on Dec 7, 2013
Published on Dec 7, 2013
An editorial piece documenting the rise of Andy Murray as a tennis superstar and his hunt to end the the 77 year wait for a British Wimbledo...