Back when Andy Murray won his first Wimbledon title in 2013, the weight of his country’s
expectations was on his shoulders. He was the first British man to win the Gentlemen’s Single
Trophy since 1935 (when Fred Perry won). Murray had already achieved the Olympic Gold
Medal in 2012 for Great Britain, but he was looking for a second slam so he wouldn’t be seen as
a one-Slam footnote like the few (Marin Cilic and Juan Martin Del Potro) who have won during
the era of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic. He was looking for his place in
But, on Sunday, July 10, the win was for him.
“It is different,” Murray, the No. 2 seed, said. “I feel happier, more content. You know, I feel like
this was sort of more for myself and my team as well.
“Last time, it was just pure relief. It was such a big thing for a British man to win Wimbledon…
I didn’t really enjoy the moment as much, whereas I’m going to make sure I enjoy this one more
than the others.”
It’s been three years since he won that last slam on the same grounds and you could see the
sensations wash over him at the end as he broke down after the match and continued to feel
emotional at the beginning of the awards ceremony.
“It’s great. I could tell he was very emotional at the end and the way he was holding the trophy,
it was like, ‘you’re not taking that away from me,’” said Murray’s mother (and first coach), Judy
A Top Four Champion for sure
He has also solidified his position among the top four current Grand Slam winners.
It was a question for a while when he was tied by Stan Wrawrinka’s number of Grand Slams (2)
over Novak Djokovic at last year’s French Open. The Swiss top 10 player had two Grand Slams
to his name as well, that is, until Sunday, when Murray surpassed him. Murray had always
appeared in more GS finals than Wrawrinka (11 total), but had lost more than he had won. With
Sunday’s result, he moves ahead of “Stan the Man” and guarantees his position among the
current top 4 players.
It was also the first Wimbledon final in 14 years without either Federer, Djokovic or Rafael
Nadal. Murray probably would have won more grand slams by now, but there were always two
guys standing in his way, Roger Federer (who he lost 3 finals to), and Novak Djokovic (lost 5
to). Neither made it to the semifinals this time. Who’s to say if he would have lost to either
again? Djokovic lacked some of his usual luster at this Wimbledon competition. Federer,
although he still showed flashes of brilliance in several matches, is still recovering physically
from a few injuries (back and knee) in an otherwise injury-free career.
Murray has also renewed his coaching relationship with Ivan Lendl, after a sporadic stint with
Amelie Mauresmo. It was with Lendl that he achieved his first two Grand Slams and his
Olympic Gold Medal. Lendl’s back and is showing all the signs of why he’s a heavily sought-
after coach. He’s helped Andy Murray’s winning strategy, but perhaps he’s helped the most with
Murray’s ability to lose and come back. Lendl’s probably the only single major player who can
relate to Murray’s losing streak: he lost more grand slams than he won (8 wins to 11 losses). He
also won grand slams after losing so many (back-to- back Australian Open wins in 1989-1990).
Any advice he can and has given the Scotsman on how to leave the losses behind and take on the
chance to win again is probably invaluable. Only someone who’s been there can truly give the
best advice. And clearly his advice is helping a lot. Since Lendl rejoined his ranks, Murray’s won
27 of his 29 matches.
“It is also particularly impressive how he deals with losses,” commented former world-number
one Lleyton Hewitt to ESPN, after Murray’s historic Wimbledon win.
Murray told The Telegraph in June 2016, “Ivan is the best coach I’ve had. It was good to have
someone who could normalize failing.”
A Model of Efficiency
The number two seed played at the highest level of the four semifinalists. He dominated Milos
Raonic in the final, who hit the lowest return percentage among the top players in the semi-
finals: Federer and Berdych were tied at 67%, Raonic at 64%, but Murray’s statistic is the most
telling, at 77%. Although Raonic hit the most return winners (20 compared to Murray’s stat of
10), he won the most points on his first serve with a 34% winner rate (Berdych 30%, Federer
29%, Raonic 22%) AND second serves at 58% (compared to Berdych’s 57%, Raonic’s 50%, and
Federer’s 49%). His game was highly efficient throughout the tournament: he hit the least
amount of return errors in the semifinals: only 107 compared to Raonic’s 226, Berdych’s 150,
and the frequently consistent Federer at 142.
Many also consider him the greatest sportsman in Great Britain. Former Top Gear host and
television and radio presenter Chris Evans has called for Andy Murray to be knighted after his
second Wimbledon triumph.
“Sir Andy Murray – what a win. Sobbing with pride. Him and us. A brilliant example of the
fruits hard work and total dedication can achieve,” he gushed.
Murray also helped Great Britain secure its first Davis Cup win last year since 1936, winning 11
matches (8 singles and 3 doubles). Along with his team, he won the BBC Sports Personality
Team of the Year Award, along with the individual BBC Sports Personality of the Year.
For the last four years Murray has been playing very capable tennis. With the exception of last
year’s US Open, he has gotten to at least the quarterfinals of all the Grand Slams he has
participated in since 2011.
He’s also breaking international records: he is the only player to have won Olympic Gold and the
US Open in the same calendar year. Along with just Nadal and Andre Agassi, he holds a Gold
Medal and two majors on different surfaces.
His performance in the Final was remarkably proficient. Milos Raonic threw everything at him
and in his customary fashion, served incredibly, but Murray was on-point the whole time and had
an answer for all. Remembering fondly some of the long rallies that have occurred at the last
match of Wimbledon (that epic final between Federer and Nadal in 2008 comes to mind
especially), three setters in the final always seem tame, but the score doesn’t truly reflect how
close (and exciting) the match really was. Net play suits grass so well: of the 74 times Raonic
came to the net, he won 46 of his points whereas a highly efficient Murray won 17 of his 22 net
A Win for Great Britain
In the end, Great Britain’s hope didn’t disappoint. The British politicians (PM David
Cameron—who was unfortunately booed during the awards ceremony—along with Scotland’s
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon) and royalty (both the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, William
and Kate) in attendance couldn’t hide their smiles afterwards. Sherlock Holms’ actor Benedict
Cumberbatch and Murray exchanged mutual admiration afterwards in the player’s lounge. Well-
deserved accolades came in from former champions all over the world.
Former British number-one player, Greg Rusedski said Murray should be considered “Britain’s
greatest ever sportsman.” The former US Open finalist explained, “What he’s accomplished is
“I think I handled it OK," said Murray. That is an understatement. At age 29, he is still perhaps
playing at his most optimum.
“I still feel like my best tennis is ahead of me, that I have an opportunity to win more,"
Murray said. "Everyone’s time comes at different stages. For some, it comes in their early 20s,
some mid-20s. Hopefully mine is still to come.”