We’ve witnessed all his ups and downs. Seen him break down after losing his maiden Wimbledon final, and break the the mold a year later, becoming the first British man to be Wimbledon Champion for 77 years. Watched him play second fiddle to tennis greats in the most formidable era of tennis there has ever been. But after all the stress that has come with supporting the Scotsman throughout his career, we can now officially hail Andy Murray as the tennis world number one.
Earlier this week Andy Murray was confirmed as world number one after Milos Raonic pulled out of their semi-final match at the Paris Masters. Murray becomes the first Briton to hold the number one ranking, gaining momentum off the back of winning his second Wimbledon and Olympic titles earlier this year. He leapfrogs Novak Djokovic, who had held the top spot for 122 consecutive weeks.
Murray has had to wait a long time for his number one title. The previous three holders, Djokovic, Federer and Nadal, all achieved the feat in their early 20s, but after battling such fierce competition, Andy has claimed the ranking aged 29. If nothing else, this is a mark of his perseverance and determination, and he will serve as an inspiration for all young British tennis players for years to come.
Those shouts of ‘come on Tim!’ are long forgotten. Andy Murray has been a household name in Britain, and around the world, for many years now and his number one ranking cements him as one of the greatest tennis stars to play the game. He has achieved what once seemed unthinkable for a Brit in the modern men’s game, winning multiple Grand Slam titles along the way.
For those watching at home, Murray is a mark of what is now possible in British tennis. After cheering Tim Henman to semi-final after semi-final, Murray has blown all previous expectation out the water, and now those who come after him have one hell of an act to follow.
What will come next for Andy Murray? He still has more to achieve, with two of the four Grand Slams still alluding his grasp. And who will be the next Brit to follow in his footsteps? British tennis has come a long way since Murray came onto the scene in 2005, and there’s no telling how far it can go with the added impact of his success on generations to come.
Has Andy’s surge to the number one spot inspired you to pick up a racket? There are hundreds of tennis courts to choose from in and around London on the MyLocalPitch website. Check out our tennis page to find your nearest venue.
BY - Emilie Adib
11 November 2016