A long 77 years ended for the British when a much anticipated match ended in victory for Andy Murray. Perhaps Sir Andrew Barron Murray is in store for the world. Prepare for the potential beginning of knighthood for Murray since there is speculation from sources including Prime Minister David Cameron that Queen Elizabeth might perform the ceremony soon. But, an era that saw Great Britain’s worst showing in the sport they created has ended. Andy Murray’s quest for the most prestigious major in tennis came to an end on Sunday. Even on the women’s side, the last Wimbledon Champion was Virginia Wade in 1977. Murray has had a chip on his shoulder since the moment he became a prominent tennis player. This victory is more of a relief than anything else. The British can only hope that after Andy Murray’s career is finished, more British men erupt on to the world stage.
The British media placed much pressure on Andy Murray throughout his career from the time he turned professional. Murray has appeared in 3 of the last 4 grand slam finals and the one he didn’t was this year’s French Open, which he didn’t participate in. He has a 2-5 career record in the finals of the four majors. Surprisingly, he has met only two opponents in all of his seven grand slam finals appearances, Roger Federer or Novak Djokovic. He disappointed all of Britain when he began his career with 4 consecutive losses in grand slam finals. Murray made his first Wimbledon finals last year, but had an emotional defeat at the hands of Roger Federer in four sets. Yet, his career turned around in last year’s Summer Olympics, coincidentally on the same Wimbledon Centre Court, when he defeated Roger Federer to capture the gold medal. His breakthrough came in last year’s US Open, winning his first grand slam. Not Wimbledon but even a grand slam hadn’t been won in 76 years by a British man, the last being Fred Perry in 1936.
17.3 million people in Britain alone watched the competitive three setter between Murray and Djokovic. Although I was expecting a long fierce five setter, the match that played out had more riveting points and sets that I could’ve hoped for. The last game of the 6-4, 7-5, 6-4 match forced the hair on the spectator’s backs to stand up. Murray had THREE match points when the score was 40-0. Djokovic miraculously pulled off a deuce in suspenseful 20-something shot rallies. Djokovic miraculously held advantage three different times in three separate deuces. Murray forced a fourth deuce and won another point to attain an advantage and then his lifetime ambition came to fruition when Novak Djokovic’s ball hit the top of the net. Essentially, every single newspaper or media publication in Great Britain had Andy Murray on the front page or cover with the word “Champion” somewhere in big and bold letters. Being a champion is something that Murray has worked tirelessly for, but being a “Wimbledon Champion” means infinitely more to him and all of Britain.