Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Fans salute Andy Murray in moving Centre Court sendoff

Andy Murray’s Thursday night may have involved a doubles defeat on Centre Court at Wimbledon, but that did not stop the grass-court major from offering a fitting tribute to the two-time singles champion and home favourite in London.

Rinky Hijikata and John Peers delivered a clinical performance to overcome Murray and his brother Jamie Murray 7-6(6), 6-4 in a first-round clash. With Andy making what he has said will be his final appearance at the grass-court major, the home crowd offered vociferous support to the two-time Wimbledon singles champion and former No. 1 in the PIF ATP Rankings throughout.

It was not enough to carry him and his brother to victory, but the cheering for Murray did not stop once Hijikata and Peers had wrapped their 88-minute win. Former WTA star and legendary British broadcaster Sue Barker came onto Centre Court to pay tribute to Murray, a 46-time tour-level titlist, before a tribute video was played that featured his great rivals Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, as well as Serena Williams.

Despite Thursday’s defeat, the former No. 1 in the PIF ATP Rankings Murray is still set for at least one more match at SW19. He will team with fellow British major winner Emma Raducanu in the mixed doubles, but has said he is likely to retire later this summer. He has been named in Great Britain’s team for the 2024 Paris Olympics in late July.

“It is hard, because I would love to keep playing, but I can’t,” said Murray said in an interview with Barker during which he reflected on some of his career highlights and paid tribute to his family. “Physically it’s just too tough now. All of the injuries have added up and they haven’t been insignificant.

<a href=''>Jamie Murray</a> and <a href=''>Andy Murray</a>

“I want to play forever. I love the sport. It’s given me so much, taught me loads of lessons over the years that I can use in the rest of my life. But I don’t want to stop, so it is hard.”

During his press conference after leaving Centre Court, Murray said, “When the video was playing, my head was spinning a lot. I know I’m about to have to speak. It’s difficult in those moments ’cause there’s a lot of people you want to thank and address, but it is not easy.

“It was pretty emotional, as well. Yeah, watching the video was nice, but hard as well, for me because you know it’s coming to the end of something that you’ve absolutely loved doing for such a long time. So that’s difficult.”

Murray revealed that he did not know two of his daughters would be in attendance. “When we were waiting in the locker room beforehand, I saw on one of the TVs that they were there sitting next to my wife. It was nice,” Murray said.

“They’ve only been to one other match that I played and sat in the stands before, in Nottingham last year. I didn’t even know. I didn’t know they were there. It was nice they managed to make it.”

At the end of the interview, Murray was congratulated by a lineup of past Wimbledon champions including Djokovic, John McEnroe, Martina Navratilova, Lleyton Hewitt and Conchita Martinez. He was also embraced by current WTA World No. 1 Iga Swiatek and British stars Tim Henman, Cameron Norrie, Jack Draper and Daniel Evans, as well as Holger Rune.

<a href=''>Novak Djokovic</a> shares an embrace with <a href=''>Andy Murray</a>.

Murray and Djokovic in tight hug

In the minds of much of the British public, Murray is the man who took over the task of snapping the host nation’s long wait for a Wimbledon men’s singles champion from Henman. The four-time semi-finalist Henman was the last person to congratulate Murray, who ultimately ended the nation’s 77-year wait in 2013, before he shared a long embrace with his brother Jamie and walked off court to a standing ovation.

Jamie said: “I think it was a fun experience for me to be out there and play with him. Obviously it was kind of strange knowing what the sort of background to the match was. But yeah, it was cool to be able to do that. I think the club did a really nice kind of tribute at the end. It was really nice that so many players stuck around for that, as well. It was nice to see some of the guys on court with Andy afterwards.”

British fans give a rousing farewell to their favourite tennis son, <a href=''>Andy Murray</a>.

To conclude the brothers’ press conference, Andy said: “They did a really nice job this evening. I’m glad that it’s done now. Obviously [I will] try and enjoy the mixed doubles in a couple days’ time. It should be fun. Then got a family holiday planned after this, then the Olympics, that’s it.”

In other Thursday doubles action, third seeds Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury made a confident start on the All England Club grass with a 7-5, 6-4 triumph against Willem Blumberg and Casper Ruud. Fourth seeds Marcelo Arevalo and Mate Pavic also advanced after defeating N.Sriram Balaji and Luke Johnson 6-4, 7-5.

<a href=''>Andy Murray</a>
Credit: ATP Tour 

You May Also Like


The British Boxing Board of Control (BBBofC) issued a memo today stating that they are “not considering applications for any Ghanaian boxers.” This means...

Olympic Games

Huang Guohui – who coached Vietnam’s swimming team at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games here – has died in quarantine after returning from the...

African Cup Of Nations

The Black Stars’ appearance in the 2021 edition will be their 23rd time and they will be keen to end their long awaited drought...

Combat Sports

Malaysia based multi decorated Ghanaian kickboxer, Gerald Dah is in high spirits ahead of his latest fight this Friday after safely landing in Kuala...