Wimbledon 2012 men’s final: Murray v Federer

Roger Federer wins a record-equalling seventh Wimbledon title with a four-set victory over Britain’s Andy Murray.

8 July 2012 Last updated at 20:16

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As it happened

  1. 1852:  

    And there we shall leave it, on the day Roger Federer wins his record-equalling seventh Wimbledon title and Andy Murray, if he comes up just short, wins the respect and sympathy of millions across the land. Thanks for all your marvellous texts and Tweets over the last fortnight - hope you've enjoyed all the live text commentaries. Lots more to come - analysis, more from Murray and Federer, blogs and all the rest. It was rather fun, wasn't it?

    Miles Maclagan , Murray's former coach

    "He has almost resisted being liked. He wants to be liked for winning titles, not for who he is. He is not into the celebrity lifestyle at all."

    John Lloyd , BBC Sport

    "Murray wasn't passive today. He gave 100%, his attitude was good from the start he didn't get negative. He was taking chances and taking the ball on and, to me, it was a very good performance. There's still plenty of more Grand Slams left yet."

    Miles Maclagan , Murray's former coach

    "It was an incredible match, it had everything. You know when someone is giving their all. I can understand that not everyone is a great fan of Andy Murray but he drives every day to get the best out of himself. He has got all the money he could ever spend but every day he is striving for titles. He is up against the best tennis players of all time but he is trying."

  5. 1847:  

    Deep in the basement of the Wimbledon press centre, Murray is now doing his big post-match media conference. He looks like he's coming to terms with it all a little now - still a little gruff with emotion, still a touch bleary round the eyes, but who wouldn't be. Who wouldn't be.

    Tim Henman , BBC Sport

    "Andy did such a good job at the beginning by getting a break of serve. He's never won a set in a Grand Slam final. Federer's ball striking and timing was immaculate. I don't think Federer plays as consistently as he did a couple of years ago, but when he plays his best tennis he is the best. He thoroughly deserved it."

    Pat Cash , BBC Radio 5 Live

    "I have been in the same position at the Australian Open. I couldn't make a speech and it's really tough. Andy played great tennis. The match was at an unbelievably high standard. Murray will win this title, I said it might not be this year. But I wouldn't put money against him winning it next year. He is improving all the time."

  8. 1838:  

    Looking back, it all hinged on the 12th game of the second set, when Federer - a set down, seemingly going into a tie-breaker, went from good to wonderful in the space of a few points. With that break came the set, the momentum and ultimately the championship.


    From Tiger Woods on Twitter "Hats off to Murray for a great fight. But we saw why Fed is the #GOAT."


    From Michelle Daniels, Reading, via text on 81111: "If that speech doesn't lay to rest any doubts about Andy's attitude then nothing will. Incredibly gracious and showing exactly how much this meant to him. Next year, Andy. Don't stop believing."

    John Lloyd , BBC Sport

    "What Murray has had to go through these last two weeks, to go out there and win the first set... The momentum was going his way but after that Roger just stepped up. As we've seen over the years, when it counts Federer just goes up to a level no-one can live with. When Federer's on he's just too good."

    Miles Maclagan , BBC Radio 5live

    "I never stop being in awe at how good these guys are. It is incredible to watch. I think Federer is a much better player now then he was when he was so far ahead of the game. He has much stiffer competition now. Lleyton Hewitt and Andy Roddick are not Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. He was the king, then he was leapfrogged, and he has had to reinvent himself."


    From Ian Robbins on Twitter: "Andy Murray is Britain's best male tennis player for 75 years. He can't beat the best ever, there's no shame in that."


    Olympic champion skier Lindsey Vonn on Twitter: "This is why I love tennis and sports. Two gracious champions. At a loss for words. Roger Federer world #1. Amazing."


    From Georgina North on Twitter: "Think I'm going to have a tear in my eye for a while. Poor Andy I just wanted to give him a hug."

  16. 1832:  

    Cameras strobing the still Centre Court air, Federer waving and smiling and, every now and then, glancing down at the trophy as if to say, it's good to have you back, old friend...


    From Diccon Bewes on Twitter: "The British can teach the world how lose gracefully. We've had enough practice. Great stuff from Murray in tears."

  18. 1830:  

    Federer's twin daughters watching on with mother Mirka. A smile now on Murray's face - he did well there, and I think we had a rare glimpse of the man behind the player. He will walk to the crowd to squiggle some signatures as behind him the champion parades the old gold pot to the adoring crowds.

    Pat Cash , BBC Radio 5 Live

    "I don't think anyone can be called the greatest of all time but it is amazing that Federer is back at number one. He has gone back to the drawing board. It is starting to click now and he is more aggressive. As long as he stays fit he is almost unstoppable."

  20. 1826:  

    Here's Roger, clutching the trophy once again. "Andy will at least win one Grand Slam. I think I played some of my best tennis in the last couple of matches. I've missed playing in the finals, and it feels like a great moment. I've gone through some struggles, so this one comes at the right time."


    From Shouma Khan on Twitter: "Federer must be greatest ever. One of the best sportsmen ever full stop. Come on Murray for #USOpen! You'll get there one day."

  22. 1824:  

    Murray having a tough old time getting this out - it's all hitting him, and he'll drop to his haunches and take a moment. Lots of tears now. "Congratulations Roger - you deserve it. Thanks to everyone who supported me - you did a great job." He looks around at the crowd. "And last of all to you guys. Everybody always talks about the pressure of playing at Wimbledon, but it's not the people watching - they make it incredible." Lots more tears now, but the crowd are putting a lovely collective arm round his shoulders.

  23. 1823:  

    Tears from Murray - he's choking up here. Big words coming up. "I'm going to try this - it isn't going to be easy..." Floods of tears now, buckets of sympathetic applause from all around. Hang in there old boy.

    Richard Krajicek , BBC Radio 5 live

    "Andy Murray brought his A game but it wasn't enough. He had his chances but the momentum of the match changed. He is a fighter and everyone should be so happy that they have a superstar like Andy Murray representing their country."

  25. 1821:  

    The Centre Court crowd on their feet - the trophies are brought on, and Murray will wave to all corners as he trudges leaden-footed to collect the runners-up silver plate. Of course he looks heartbroken; he has never been as close to a maiden Grand Slam title. Today, the equation was simple: the superior player has come through.

    Alastair Eykyn , BBC Radio 5 live

    "Everybody on their feet to salute a champion in every sense of the word. Some doubted whether he would ever scale these heights again."

    Boris Becker , BBC Sport

    "He lost to a better player today. Most successful tennis player of all time and there's no shame in losing to Roger Federer."

  28. 1817:  

    It's a fourth Grand Slam final defeat for Andy Murray, and he sinks into his chair numbed with the emotion of it all. Let's not bang on about the 76 years - it's not his fault, and he was simply outplayed by a man today who will be remembered as long as the game of tennis is played.


    Federer collapses to the turf - the greatest grass court player of all time is back on top of the world. Supreme, simply supreme.

    GAME, SET AND MATCH - Murray 6-4 5-7 3-6 4-6 Federer

    Splendid support as the two men walk out for the denouement - shouts of "MURRAY! MURRAY!", deafening clapping. First point - Murray opening up the guns, blasting a forehand... in! He'll toss up a lob now - is that dropping in? It isn't, you know, and Fed will ace again for two championship points. First serve goes wide. Murray attacking the second - saved! Here's the second - Murray will flay - it's wide, it's wide...

    Pat Cash , BBC Radio 5 Live

    "Federer is serving for the title at Wimbledon. I don't care who you are, you're going to be tight. There is still a chance."


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Might (but probably won't): "A small knot of red-clad Federer fans are getting more and more vocal. The Murray majority around adopt the studied ambivalence reserved for street corner preachers, but the predictions that the end is nigh for Murray are almost true."

    Murray 6-4 5-7 3-6 4-5 Federer*

    Murray laboured now, breathing heavily. Federer just long with his beartrap of a forehand, but he'll land another down the line for 40-30. Fractured shouts around Centre. Such power, such wonderful power, slashing off either wing for deuce. Second serve, the flames rising around Murray's legs. Fed goes long again. Rhythmical clapping from the crowd; ace down the middle for Murray advantage. Make him serve it out. Ace again! Federer to his chair, knowing four points will once again make him the king of Wimbledon.

    Alastair Eykyn , BBC Radio 5 live

    "There is no finer sight in tennis than Roger Federer at the top of his game."


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Federer's Fell: "Murray's forehand drifts out at 15-30 in the sixth and lands like a Ricky Hatton body blow on those on the hill. Cheers crumple into groans as the break chance disappears. A chant of "stand up if you still believe" dies away with no-one roused from the deck."

    Murray* 6-4 5-7 3-6 3-5 Federer

    Murray furious with himself. Even now, teetering on the edge, he has a tiny opening at 30-30 and second serve but he can only find the net. Federer a single game away.


    BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Swiss mountain: "You can spot Murray's fellow Scots on the hill. They are the ones rocking the seldom-seen combination of lobster-red necks and industrial strength waterproofs. Sun peeking back through the clouds again now."


    From Marvin in Leeds, via text on 81111: "Watching Federer play is like watching the All Blacks play rugby. Regardless of who he is playing a part of you wants him to win so that your belief in beauty, flair, artistry and skill is justified and that the world remains ordered as we would desire it to be, placing those with such grace on and off the court at the top. RF-the world's best.. but just for today.. come on Andy!"

    Tim Henman , BBC Sport

    "Federer was certainly nervous at the start of the match and he's in the driver's seat now. I'm sure he's going to be nervous if he has the chance to serve this match out."

    Murray 6-4 5-7 3-6 3-4 Federer*

    Still the errors come - backhand under no pressure slapping against the net cord. Federer twiddling his racquet in his palms, bouncing on the balls of his feet. Murray holds with a solid overhead; Federer to his chair knowing two holds of serve will give him the world number one ranking back and, much, much more importantly, his 17th Grand Slam title.


    From Yashi Jay Goolaup on Twitter: "Federer dismantling Murray now. Murray's got nothing left in his body. Fed just too good for him."


    From Crip Cooke on Twitter: "They said Murray will have to play his best tennis to win today, they were wrong. Andy has at times & Federer's outplayed him.

    Murray* 6-4 5-7 3-6 2-4 Federer

    "He's got all the shots, this kid," says the resigned wag to my left, as Federer magics up a volley that would grace any court in the world. Utterly unexpected double-fault - 15-30 - and Murray has the baseline there for him if he can find it - ach, he can't, he's biffed it long. Federer purrs away, a Bentley fine-tuned by the angels themselves, and Murray has two games to save himself from the gurgler.

    Miles Maclagan , BBC Radio 5live

    "Incredible tennis all round. How can you not be impressed by Federer? He is a predator, he smelt blood and he goes in for the kill. That backhand winner - how do you even do that with one hand? I cannot comprehend it."


    From Matt Whittle, a brave Englishman in Dunblane, via text on 81111: "Been watching in a Dunblane pub, a lot of negativity and lack of hope after that set."

    Tim Henman , BBC Sport

    "Murray has just got to keep asking questions. At this moment in time Federer is playing the game at a different level. Murray has just got to hang in there as long as he can."

    Murray 6-4 5-7 3-6 2-3 Federer*

    And now to the brink. Unforced errors piling up at Murray's fet, shackling him to the stake - break point after break point, Federer flashing that blade of his like D'Artagnan, Murray in desperation to the net - passed, passed with peerless wonder, for the break that could take Federer to his seventh Wimbledon title.

    WHAT A SHOT! - Murray* 6-4 5-7 3-6 2-2 Federer

    Heavenly stuff from Federer. Already at a celestial level, he rummages into his top drawer and pulls out a faked forehand slice that leaves Murray mid-court, foxed and folorn. Those heady days of the first set and a half seeming an awful long way off.


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Roger's Ridge: "Red, white and blue facepaint streaking south towards his Adam apple, one Murray fan staggers out of the soggy scrum for some respite as the third set ends. Spirits flagging, flags reduced to extra buttock padding. People are mentally drawing up Murray's route back into the match and sucking their teeth over the distance and dangers involved."


    Former England striker Michael Owen on Twitter: "Sport, no matter which game, is compelling when being played at the highest level. This is great TV."

    Tim Henman , BBC Sport

    "I think serving first in the fourth set is a small advantage and if he can just keep holding serve and then sneak a break. He really has to dig deep here and try to hang in."

    Murray 6-4 5-7 3-6 2-1 Federer*

    Ghastly emptiness about Centre when the Murray errors land. Never have 16,000 people sounded so silent. Murray squeezes through his service game but it's tight again. Beetling brows now, heavy shoulders. Where will the change come from?

    Alastair Eykyn , BBC Radio 5 live

    "That was a grimace of pain, no doubt about it from Murray. Looks like his left thigh. It's always difficult to read into the injuries of Andy Murray. You never know how serious they are."


    From BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew on Twitter: "Huge tension in the pub. Murray/Federer - and my mate into last minute for eBay auction on a van."

    Murray* 6-4 5-7 3-6 1-1 Federer

    Come on little acorns, sprout fresh hope for us... Federer flummoxed enough to pull a stray forehand wide, and at last Murray will come in behind those fizzed groundstrokes - long from Fed under pressure, break point. Fed goes wide - Murray sprinting onto it with eyes wide and racquet poised - down the line, has he made it? Not by an inch. These margins, these margins. And now Federer will capitalise, drilling another faultless forehand combo away. Hard, hard yards for Murray.


    From Lee Grist on Twitter: "Have to feel for Murray here, Federer hadn't just gone up a level, he's gone up to another planet, the guy is immense."

    Miles Maclagan , BBC Radio 5live

    "It's a big ask now. Murray has to win two sets out of two on a court which Roger Federer is utterly comfortable on. The negative body language never used to bother Andy too much but it gives your opponent a boost. They look at him and think he is struggling out here now."


    Third set stats: Aces - Federer 4-3 Murray; 1st serves in - Fed 64%-49% Murray; Points won on 1st serve - Fed 88%-57%; Points won on 2nd serve - Fed 67%-55% Murray; Unforced errors - Fed 6-8 Murray; Winners - Fed 15-13 Murray.

    Murray 6-4 5-7 3-6 1-0 Federer*

    Murray has problems every which way you look right now, but one of the biggest issues is his first serve - puttering along at under 50% in that last set, and you cannot live off those crumbs. Federer to the tape to punch away with robotic brilliance, but Murray will scrap and chase - onto that forehand, onto it again. From small acorns.

    Pat Cash , BBC Radio 5 Live

    "A fantastic set from Federer. He came out attacking a lot more and Andy was getting down on himself a little bit. That 20-minute game took it out of him. But he has regrouped now. Murray in the past would have lost the game from here, but I don't see that now."

    Jonathan Overend , 5 Live tennis correspondent

    "Federer has played this game a different way under the roof since they came back out. He is hitting those forehand winners now."

    Boris Becker , BBC Sport

    "You serve better indoors; no wind, no sun. The reason Federer's been so good indoors is because of his serve."


    From Francis Donohoe on Twitter: "Federer doesn't sweat. He forces the air around him to cry and uses it's tears to cool himself."

    GAME AND THIRD SET - Murray* 6-4 5-7 3-6 Federer

    Clamber off that sick-bed, Murray, throw away the crutches and attack him. That's the one - forehand, crashed into the corner, 30-30. Yells of encouragement. He's in this point too - Federer defensive, Murray advancing, Murray with the forehand - wide, horribly wide, and Federer is at set point. Total silence on Centre. Federer winds up... ace, set sealed, the match and title slipping further and further away from the homegrown here...

    Andrew Castle , BBC Sport

    "Federer just pulls an opponent all over the court. Murray, you can't but fail to be impressed by his effort and determination. He can't dig any deeper, can he? Federer is just unbelievable indoors."


    From Amanda, via text on 81111: "Locked out of house. TV in house. Phone signal patchy. Awaiting locksmith and vast call out charge so can continue to watch thrilling match."

    Murray 6-4 5-7 2-5 Federer*

    Murray racing to 40-0 - he was 40-0 in that last service game too, and that ended with him broken. Into the net to clump a simple put-away into the net, and Federer will sear a forehand cross-court for 40-30. Not again. First serve lands - Fed stretching into the net. And now to break.

    Murray* 6-4 5-7 2-5 Federer

    Murray has to stay alive here, hang on and hang on and hope this current exquisite Federer level somehow drops. Federer not giving him so much as a sniff though - not a fingerhold, not a dream. Murray to hold to stay his third set execution.

    Jonathan Overend , 5 Live tennis correspondent

    "Is that the turning point in the final? A huge game but pyschologically that will have hurt Andy Murray."

    Boris Becker , BBC Sport

    "Murray shouldn't get too frustrated now. It's the Federer genius that is coming out."

    Murray 6-4 5-7 2-4 Federer*

    Punchy from Murray, clubbing a two-fisted backhand across Roger's regal snout as he sashays to the net. Thunderous ace down the middle, but Roger has his nasty habit of suddenly accelerating without any audible change of gear - slicing, dicing, dashing, Murray flailing at the net and eating turf as his feet go from underneath him. Looked nasty, but then it always does. Up like Lazarus, down like a tenpin as Federer crashes away a forehand off a lob as delicate and cruel as an assassin's stiletto. Break point, fear and cant in the air. To the net from Murray - there's space down the line and he'll find it, but the Federer forehand is punishing - clubbed away from a second break point. Murray waits, exhales, serves - ace! Oh no, that is an old-fashioned stinker, a backhand into the net so feeble it almost dies of shame. First serve wide down the middle. Second serve, break point - Fed running round his backhand, surprised by the spitting spin, Murray to slap away the winner. And so it goes on - deuce to deuce, stomachs churning, dread spreading. Brilliant from Federer, wonderful forehand off his toes, yet again to break point. Second serve to attack - Murray leant back on the ropes, gloves up in front of his face, absorbing some awful blows - he'll survive there as Federer's forehand flies just long, and then again to mis-hit backhand. Come on man, roll with the punches, get out of that trap. 18 minutes now for this game alone, a sublime reflex lob for break point number 10. Fed jabbing relentlessly, opening up the exhausted defences, Murray wide open and broken, broken at last.


    Steve Finn on Twitter: "Any cricketer could have told the people at Wimbledon that that shower wasn't just passing. That was an early lunch sort of cloud."


    From Rich Hook on Twitter: "Fed had momentum before break & roof favours his style so Murray needs another fast (re)start."

    Murray* 6-4 5-7 2-3 Federer

    Federer holds to love, the grandstands still only half full. Plenty of punters queuing to get back in - murderous lines for the drinks concessions, murderous.

    Boris Becker , BBC Sport

    "It was important for Murray to get right back into the match. Both players have warmed up enough now."


    BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Mudpile: "Those little clip-on Union Jack head brollies? Strictly for novelty use only. Shouldn't need saying but some seem a little surprised (and drenched) out here."

    Murray 6-4 5-7 2-2 Federer*

    Just had a gander at Henman Hill - if you're on it and reading this, put your phone away now while it still works. Torrential. Fakey inside-out drop-shot from Federer that's the shot of the match so far, but Murray will find his range on the serve to come back to level pegs. I wonder what Ivan Lendl said to him. I can equally imagine him saying absolutely nothing, just walking over to Murray and smacking a drink out his hand before turning on his heel and stalking out.

    Jonathan Overend , 5 Live tennis correspondent

    "The rain is absolutely pelting down and it is very loud on the roof. It must be a distraction."


    From David & Cassie, via text on 81111: "Not a cloud in the sky in Antigua if that helps!! Rum and coke anyone?? Not you Andy, get your game face on. It's your time, you can do it."

    Murray* 6-4 5-7 1-2 Federer

    Battering it down outside - the roof sounds like it's under attack from gravel. Fed holds, as we knew he would.

  81. 1652:  

    The players will be allowed to knock up again, of course, as we're under slightly different conditions with the lid on. A reminder that we're at a set apiece and 1-1 in the third, with Federer 40-0 up in his second service game of the set. Strap yourself in, the whirlygig is about fire up again...


    From Anis Kara on Twitter: "Too nervous to tweet. Come on Murray!"

  83. 1647:  

    Oh ye of little faith. It's Roger! It's Murray!

    John Lloyd , BBC Sport

    "Lendl will be saying 'you've started well, frustrate Federer'. He's forcing Federer to go for shots which are outside his comfort zone. Murray's lost one set, big deal - he's in the match. [Murray needs to] come out at the start of the third set and throw the message back at Roger. He can win this."


    From Gary Lineker on Twitter: "Come on Andy Murray, not even Fred Perry won Wimbledon with the roof on."

  86. 1641:  

    With the roof on, the covers are coming off. Absolutely rammo in the corridors and concourses of Centre - plenty of toilet-dashing, beverage-fetching and general about-milling going on. I give it five minutes till the players are back on. Trust me.


    BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Mount: "The bombdoors open wide on that B52 bit of cumulus and it is absolutely sheeting down. Man v Food? We've got a new sleeper hit on our hands here: Man v Weather. How long will those on the Mount defend their hard-won viewing spot under an elemental onslaught. Humanity holding out at the moment, but there are some shrieks emanating from under the canopies."

    Jonathan Overend , 5 Live tennis correspondent

    "A cheer goes up with the announcement that the roof will be closed. Fans love this roof and it will create a humdinger of an atmosphere for the rest of this match."

    Boris Becker , BBC Sport

    "What a spectacular first two sets. All credit to Andy, his first Wimbledon final and he plays like a veteran."

    Tim Henman , BBC Sport

    "They're both great indoor players but it's Federer who is the one who looks to dictate the points and be more aggressive and I think Federer would prefer there to be no elements. Murray's first serve percentage has been going up, he needs to keep dictating on Federer's second serve and the more backhands he can get Federer to hit the better."

  91. 1623:  

    ROOF FLASH! They are going to close the roof on Centre Court as the rain is still lashing down. So we should get play in about 40 minutes. Time for a little breather, phew!

    John Lloyd , BBC Sport

    "When you get those chances against Federer you've got to take them, otherwise he can come at you with everything. That's why he's the king. If we can keep the match outdoors we should do. The scenario I couldn't believe, though, is Federer coming out nervous at the start. It's going to be interesting from here onwards. Murray still has a great shot to win it."


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Federer's Folly: "First sniff of that heady festival scent of churned mud, spilled beer and body odour floating on the breeze. A mother tells her toddler to leave alone a lighter the little love has discovered amid the litter. It's not all strawberries and cream out here."


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on the Murray Massive:"A cloud the colour and size of the Deathstar has started sprinkling its payload on the Mount punters. Some at the back are demanding that those between them and the screen man up and down umbrellas to preserve sightlines. Just a fine mist at the moment but as they say far, far north of here, it is a bit black o'er our Bill's mother's"


    From Nick Neill on Twitter: "Worried now. A Federer with momentum is a worrying beast."


    From Jamie on Twitter: "The all-purpose Murray grimace is starting to make an appearance... nooooooo."

  97. 1616:  

    No word yet as to whether we'll wait out the downpour or pull the levers to bring the roof into place. I'll get our best men on it. They're nowhere near as good as our best women, but sadly they're already tied up.

    Miles Maclagan , BBC Radio 5live

    "Murray definitely grabbed at his back a couple of times. We saw that all through the French Open but haven't seen it here. I wonder if they are going to close the roof. It will be a three-set sprint when they come back out and Murray has a taste of a Wimbledon final now. He can come back out and approach it as a whole new match."

    Jonathan Overend , 5 Live tennis correspondent

    "Federer more than anyone else I have ever seen is able to impose his will on a game and make his opponent feel inferior. His body language screams at you; "I am back in this game now and I am going to win this game in a short space of time."


    Second set stats: Aces - Federer 3-3 Murray; 1st serves in - Fed 71%-72% Murray; Points won on 1st serve - Fed 77%-77%; Points won on 2nd serve - Fed 50%-50% Murray; Unforced errors - Fed 8-4 Murray; Winners - Fed 19-14 Murray.

  101. 1613:  

    As the clock ticks into the third hour, down comes the cold rain. Murray rather needed this, if I'm honest - Federer's grand old larceny in that second set had sucked the life and fight out of both player and home support. Mr Lendl, go earn your beans.


    From Greg, via text on 81111: "Playing drums on a bandstand in Worcester...refreshing page between pieces and in the quiet ones! Love what I'm reading - go Andy!"

    Murray 6-4 5-7 1-1 Federer*

    It's dark out there now, it's hellishly dark. Umbrellas going up on Henman Hill, Murray needing something here at 30-30. That'll do, my wire-haired friend - forehand right onto the 'in' of line, Federer pushing too hard to calm the jelly-wobbles.


    From NotRoyKeane on Twitter: "What is the story with Murray's towel OCD? He will have no face left by the time he is fifty."

    Murray* 6-4 5-7 0-1 Federer

    That is why champions touch the heights while us mere mortals scrabble in the gutter. Brilliant play from Federer, picking Murray's pocket before the Briton even guessed his nimble fingers were tightening round his wallet. Federer holding as Murray's backhand hits tape and stops dead. Listen, rain - I'm aware I gave you the big send-off no more than a few minutes ago, but your assistance may be required here.

    Boris Becker , BBC Sport

    "Roger Federer is a six-time Wimbledon champion and we shouldn't forget that. He's a magician out on the Centre Court and those last two points show what the man is capable of. No criticism of Murray, he did the best he could."

    Richard Krajicek , BBC Radio 5 live

    "Andy will think about that forehand he missed at 30-15. He put too much on it but you have to go for it in that situation."

    Alastair Eykyn , BBC Radio 5 live

    "Fabulous from Roger Federer. You have to say he played a wonderful game."


    From David at Dundee Uni, via text on 81111: "Medical school finals start tomorrow! Aargh Murray you chose the worst day to find your form!"

    GAME AND SECOND SET - Murray 6-4 5-7 Federer*

    Be gone, fat clouds, and take your unwanted malevolence with you. That's peachy from the 25-year-old Scot - to 30-0 with a dead-eyed slapper high off the backhand side, hauled back to 30-15 as Fed glides to an angled drop-shot like a man on fast-forward in a slow-motion world. Ooops - Murray biffs a forehand long for 30-30, and lumps appear in throats all around. Glorious, glorious from Federer - drop-shot from nowhere to conjure up a set point. Murray has had four break points in this set, don't forget. Federer turning back the years - backhand cut away, Murray being forced deeper, backhand dropper - make it man, make it... he can't, he can't...


    From Growlee via text on 81111: "On the pendolino heading down South from Cumbria - can't tell if my lurching stomach is thanks to the swinging train or the creeping hope that Muzza might be able to do this!"

    Murray* 6-4 5-6 Federer

    Row upon row of anxious faces, fanned out around this famous old arena. Gargantuan grey cloud sliding into view overhead - horrible behemoth, that one, and as I type those words the sun slinks away with tail between legs. Ready the life-rafts. Murray in with another sniff here off a double-fault from Roger - strange words, strange times - but Federer, as so many times before, pulls out the old serve-out-wide, forehand-into-open-court one-two. Murray to hold, once again, this time to take us into the scattergun drama of a breaker.

    Pat Cash , BBC Radio 5 Live

    "The umpires are anxious here as well. That's the third time they've called out when they didn't need to. If in doubt, keep quiet as the players can always challenge."


    From Bo on Twitter: "Murray if you don't win today I won't be angry at you... I will just be very disappointed."

    Tim Henman , BBC Sport

    "It's certainly a crucial point and he had that opportunity in the last game, but he's the one who is a set up. Murray needs to come back strong and keep the pressure on Federer. If Murray keeps the ball deep it makes life much harder for Federer."

    Murray 6-4 5-5 Federer*

    A colleague hands me a chocolate digestive; so potent is the tension that it melts almost on impact with my palm. Keyboard a dreadful mess. I should have known - amateur error. That should help - Murray arrowing away the first serves, strolling to the net when required and looking, to be honest with you, as pressurised there as a man sipping a cocktail in an inflatable chair.


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Field: "It took a little time for the atmosphere to recover from the opener as jangled nerves were bathed at the bar. Murray hustling Sir Fed's serve in the fifth sounded the hunting horn though. Wandering concentrations snap back to attention and belief is chugging back through the veins again."


    From Darryl Dickerson on Twitter: "Sitting in Florence with view of Duomo watching internet stream. Feeling sick! Hotel has 1000s of channels but no Wimbledon!"

    Murray* 6-4 4-5 Federer

    Now then. Wild forehand from Federer, and suddenly we're at 30-30. Fed has now shipped 11 unforced errors to Murray's two, numbers to bring cautious smiles from Peterhead to Penzance. Murray turning up the aggression, upping the speed, tearing into this now - into the net off a drilled backhand approach - punching away the volley, break points a-go-go. Lendl emotionless. At least someone is. Big chance here on the backhand wing - my giddy aunts, a few blades long, but Federer will curl another uncharacteristic forehand wide. Pummelling serve from the 16-time Grand Slam champ - I don't think Murray can do anything with that, and Roger wriggles away. Chances for Murray, chances - matches turn on these key moments. Murray must now hold to stay in the set.

    Murray 6-4 4-4 Federer*

    Sunhats being utilised all around - I thought I'd never again see the day. Union flags flutter with anxious encouragement as Murray finds his first serve mojo for a hold to 15. At this point in the first set, Murray was about to break. Grab the horseshoes...

    Murray* 6-4 3-4 Federer

    The long lenses of the court-side photographers sparkling in this rare July sunshine as they swivel to Federer - the old master coming to the net much more now, as if turning the clock back to those glorious days of '04 and '05. Holding now with the ease of yore too - the match accelerating, the plot changing tack once again.


    From Michael Staunton, London, via text on 81111: "In the Belfast airport bar waiting for my flight to London in 48 minutes... Have decided that if Murray wins this second set I'm not getting on the plane!"


    From Sarah Holmes on Twitter: "I was convinced Murray would bottle it but he's playing the match of his life so far."

    Pat Cash , BBC Radio 5 Live

    "The momentum is with Murray, absolutely. He could be a set and a break up now, Federer is playing some risky drop shots which are not working and are a sign of his frustration. The forehand return from Federer is not happening."

    Murray 6-4 3-3 Federer*

    Andy Murray's father Willie over there - well, you wouldn't miss it, would you? Murray's t-shirt crumpling round his shoulders as he serves out to 30-0 - he'll tug at it in distracted fashion, the focus entirely on the man staring across the net at him - mmmm, big ace down the middle, another full-bore brute out wide that Fed will frame into the middle of who-cares-where.

    Miles Maclagan , BBC Radio 5live

    "It's one good shot after another, it's full of mini battles. I thought I saw some frustration from Federer but he has shown the backbone of a champion."


    From Ross, via text on 81111: "Apparently the Ukrainians don't like tennis, so I'm sat in a bar in L'viv constantly refreshing the BBC website. Sounds like Murray is taking the game to Fed. Come on lad!"


    From Fiona, Dunfermline, via text on 81111: " Getting married next Saturday if Murray wins the top table will def be named Andy Murray. Come on the Murr!"

    Murray* 6-4 2-3 Federer

    Plenty of tam o'shanters around Centre today, some with the bonus mops of scraggy gingeros hair attached underneath. Murray straight into this - leaping at the net to pop away a backhand overhead with sweet, sweet touch, scampering to the net to flight away the lovelist forehand you'll ever see. Break points ahoy from nowhere - Federer dashing to the net, target flashing in Murray's vision, racquet pulled back - no, he's gone for the lob and there's just not enough mustard on that hot-dog. He'll go for broke here - stepping back and away to marmalise a forehand into the corner... gaaggh, just wide once again. Who said it would ever be easy?


    Here's a quick recap of that first set in highlights - Andy Murray's first ever set in a Grand Slam final.

    Boris Becker , BBC Sport

    "I just wonder as the match goes on because there have been so many rallies, whether it takes its toll on Federer's legs eventually. Federer coming much more to the net and keeping rallies shorter. I just wonder."


    From No.6 on Twitter: "Sat in an empty petrol station in darlington listening while drinking diet cola and waiting for customers. Come on rog..er Andy."

    Murray 6-4 2-2 Federer*

    Unbroken sunshine, endless tension. Murray famously loves his boxing, and he's in the biggest prize-fight of his life out there - swinging with a big haymaking serve, finding his target, Federer swaying and counter-punching.


    From Luke Nunn on Twitter: "Everyone on 2:30 Edinburgh to LDN train is streaming the #bbctennis to every device possible. Hoping the 3G remains strong enough!"

    Murray* 6-4 1-2 Federer

    Federer with that trademark white bandana tied round his forehead - pristine white t-shirt, baggy of shorts, bouncing the ball once, twice, glancing up, throwing ball up and arm back - service as silky as it comes, holding again in the time it is taking Murray to get through two points of his own.

    Andrew Castle , BBC Sport

    "Physical control from Murray, emotional control. It's what we've seen in his first six matches here at Wimbledon."


    From James, Manchester, via text on 81111: "Me, my girlfriend and 4-year-old daughter all jumped up screaming when he won that set... think we will go even crazier if he wins the match."


    From Malcolm Stephen on "Woke up at 1am here in Wellington NZ to take in this match! Glad my compatriot is making it worthwhile!"

    Murray 6-4 1-1 Federer*

    Trouble tiptoes up and taps Murray on the shoulder - wristy pick-up from Roger in the forehand corner, and Murray can only dink a backhand reply wide for 0-30. Every point a fight, every shot a heart-stopper. Running forehand on the rise from Murray, but that's a biffing backhand reply to leave him break point down. First serve long, second too feeble - Fed will stand tall and aim a dismissive backhand slap into the corner - good Lord he's gone wide. An hour and five minutes gone already. Murray not landing that first serve often enough - he's having to work so hard in every service game, dragged back again and again to deuce. Kim Sears, hair wafting, eyes narrowed. Perhaps some juju worked by the ladyfriend - Fed will roll a topspin backhand long, and when Murray creams a flat forehand away he's back on track.


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Hill: "Library hush descends as Murray and Fed swap backhand slices, each of the Mountees willing Andy's shots safely over the tape and inside the lines. Finally Fed folds the first set as a bullet serve gets right into his ribs and arms thrust into the thin blue on the Mount. Plenty of relief mixed in with that celebration. Two out of the next four sets Andy, any two, any two at all."


    First set stats: Aces - Federer 2-4 Murray; 1st serves in - Fed 68%-58% Murray; Points won on 1st serve - Fed 65%-73%; Points won on 2nd serve - Fed 27%-37% Murray; Unforced errors - Fed 16-5 Murray.

    Murray* 6-4 0-1 Federer

    You felt that Murray had to win that first set to have a chance - in the sixth and eighth games, as his serve came under crushing pressure from Federer, you feared it was being taken away from him. Wonderful fight to wrestle it back. Fed, riled, glides out and holds to love. Ominous.

    Tim Henman , BBC Sport

    "He hasn't won a set in a Grand Slam final. It's an ideal start. You can see they're both doing a good job on their opponent's second serve. Federer winning only 27% [of points] on his."

    Jonathan Overend , 5 Live tennis correspondent

    "I lost count of how many people told me this morning that the winner of the first set wins the match. We are a long way from that but what a set of tennis."


    From Mikhail DeVille on Twitter: "This is a different Murray compared to previous Slam finals. I can't see Fed handling this if it goes to 5."


    From Craig Wilson on Twitter: "Anyone else think Ivan Lendl is currently the coolest man in sport?"

    GAME AND FIRST SET - Murray 6-4 Federer*

    This crowd is so pumped up that even the security staff jumped up and clenched fists there. Huge roars as Murray's serve secures the first point. He'll have the second too unless Federer's challenge comes off - oh oh, it has. Murray now, opening up on the backhand on the replayed point, but he cannot get it up and over. Big big serve, 30-15, huge wind-up, head up.. ACE! Two set points, two set points... slamming serve, Fed nowhere, and he's done him, he's only done him... Rare chaos around Centre Court - if history was made by Murray even making it here today, he's just made a little more with his first set ever in a Grand Slam final. Who believes, who is still stalked by fear, who is somewhere between the two?


    From Armchair Critic, via text on 81111: "Without wanting to be overly critical of this guy Roger Federer, but doesn't he realise that his one handed backhand just isn't reliable enough to build a career around, yet alone win a Grand Slam."

    Murray* 5-4 Federer

    Coach Lendl in the players' box. Or the cardboard cut-out he's had in his place all fortnight. Strange forehand from Federer - long, followed almost immediately by another unforced error. Murray, from nowhere, has break points - into the serve, moving the feet, twinkling the toes, lacing a forehand - Fed off balance, backhand netted! Murray will serve for the set - for his first set in four Grand Slam finals...


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Mount/Henman Hill: "Easiest comedy crowd in the world, this. Three times some wag has broken out, 'C'mon Tim' and has been rewarded with scattered laughs. They drown out the sound of Pimms stirrers being sharpened elsewhere."


    From Jack, Plymouth, via text on 81111: "Has there ever been a better player to watch than Federer? He's the Lionel Messi to Murray's Scott Parker."

    Murray 4-4 Federer*

    Murray will serve with new balls - behave at the back - but all that means is that his serves will just come back at him even faster. Wobbling at 0-30, Federer prowling, tracking - yes yes, pair of fine forehands for 30-30, Federer then top-edging a spitting second serve like a tail-ender trying to hook a bouncer. Fed with a dropper, Murray turning on the nitrous, there with racquet poised... chance missed, his attempted backhand pass never getting up. Federer with a drop-volley so well disguised it's still lying on the turf unnoticed - another break point at a horrible time. Get that first serve landing Andy - yup, 131mph into the corner, but that's too passive - he's staying in the points but no more, and Federer will wait for the right ball to apear in his cross-hairs and then squeeze the trigger. To the net, to the net - a pick-up of perfection from Murray to save another breaker. Short backhand, sitting up, waiting to be punished - a gift for Federer, wrapped up in ribbon. Murray waits, blows cool air onto his sweating fingertips. High ball toss, hammering serve, Fed pushing long. Murray hangs on, but that's all he's doing at the moment; 49 minutes gone, and Roger is slowly exerting his iron grip.

    Richard Krajicek , BBC Radio 5 live

    "That's a very big hold. Roger Federer will feel that he should be 5-3 up now and serving for the set."

    Miles Maclagan , BBC Radio 5live

    "There has been a shift in momentum. Federer has cut out those early errors and he has slowed the game down. He is using the slice more. After four games three challenges had been used which shows you how important every single point is."


    From Anonymous (names please, or there'll be a code violation), via text on 81111: "Murray's playing brilliantly. But he needs to keep this intensity going through the entire match, the question is will he be able to?"

    Murray* 3-4 Federer

    Federer's forehand starting to purr, the ball starting to respond to his conjuror's cajolings - to 40-0 without a single stray hair falling from place, to his chair with the game as an out-swinging serve forces Murray to pull a desperate forehand well wide. Sir Alex Ferguson there, red-nosed and rapt.


    From Anita Spires on Twitter: "Worst time EVER to be carrying the torch #bbctennis #whereseveryonegone."


    From Lee Grist on Twitter: "All hail Federer's single-handed backhand, absolutely majestic shot."

    Murray 3-3 Federer*

    The rectangle of court bright with sunshine now, the net-cord glistening white, the lines cut sharp, crisp shadow from the umpire's chair shielding the crouching ball-boy. Glorious backhand fizzed cross-court from Federer, cruel and beautiful combined together to artistic effect - he'll have a pop at another deuce here, and the worried voices will shout loud again. Better first serve, Fed into the net; repeat that clause, Murray back level.


    From 4 lads crowded round a tv in Bungoma - rural Western Kenya, via text on 81111: "Great to see Andy on the attack. Come on Murray!"


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Mount/Henman Hill: "A good 20 of the FTSE 100 get a bit of free brand exposure as the corporate brollies bob on a camera sweep of the Mount. Not a deliberate bit of ambush marketing, it is just that type of gig."

    Boris Becker , BBC Sport

    "Great tennis from both players. The level of play is extraordinary. We've been wondering who is going to be fastest out of the blocks. Well, it's both."

    Murray* 2-3 Federer

    Federer up and running but not quite gliding as of old quite yet - easy overhead, slashed wide for 0-30. Murray just - just - long with a forehand, and he'll inadvertently draw his opponent to the net with a lucky flicker off the cord... mmm, touch of the gods from Federer, tickling the ball up and over and so surgically planted into the corner that Murray can only flail it into the net. Shootout of frightening power from the two - Murray pulling the trigger on bullets from the baseline, Federer fending them down and in. Backhand drive from Murray that could be used in a clinic, but that one will fall short - three games on the bounce for Federer, the balance shifting once again.

    Richard Krajicek , BBC Radio 5 live

    "What a shame for Andy. He missed an easy backhand, he mistimed it and then Federer came up with a big backhand down the line."


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Mount/Henman Hill: "David Beckham might consider a career in politics now his summer has been freed up. Comfortably wins the decibel count over PM David Cameron as the camera pans the Royal Box, although Mrs Beckham might hinder his efforts. He should sign up either of those two young dark-haired sisters at the front of the posh seats as his running mate. They seem mighty popular as well."

    Andrew Castle , BBC Sport

    "Perhaps because Federer was knocking those first serves back, Murray electing to hit a kick serve in at 93mph."

    Murray 2-2 Federer*

    Federer has had by far the easier passage to this final. He's played a total of 12 hours 12 minutes of tennis thus far; Murray has fought his way through almost 17 hours of tennis toil. Encouraging first serve from Murray at the mo - to 30-15 with power and direction, a wipe of his towel across the brow and another thumper out wide for 40-15. Thin cloud slides across the sun; Murray slices a backhand into the tramlines for 40-30. No no - backhand drive a foot beyond the baseline, and a first moment of still anxiety around Centre. Ace! Murray slicing and charging the net - Fed flashing, Murray stretching to volley... oof, fractionally wide. Oh, what a backhand from the Swiss - one-handed, creamed down the line for his first break point. Federer now all over this rally - Murray deep, forced yet deeper, backhand dying and dying into the cruel embrce of the net. Break snatched back.


    From Daniel Robinson on Twitter: "People said Murray should shut down Federer's forehand, but so far its lost him 2 games. Murray looking great already."


    From Mags, Inverness, via text on 81111: "Tense! Anxious! And peeking at the telly from behind a pillow."

    Murray* 2-1 Federer

    Murray out of the traps like a greyhound with a firework up its - oh, another fiery forehand crashed into the corner, and he'll have 0-15. Sir Steve Redgrave here, one of the nicest sporting legends you'll ever meet. Murray forced into a stray backhand that finds the net - another unforced error from Federer, his fifth already in less than three games, and as a forehand is tugged into the net Murray will have a joust at deuce. Real aggression from the Scot - ach, pumping forehand that slaps against the tape before falling back, and when Federer whips one of those peachy forehands of his own away, the six-time champion is finally on the board. Splendid start to this biggest of ding-dongs.


    Bella on text 81111: "It is Henman hill not Murray mount. No matter the outcome."


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Mount: "I stand corrected on the song front. "Six-nil, he's gonna win six-nil, he's gonna win six-nil," greets Murray's break of serve in the very first game."

    Murray 2-0 Federer*

    I'm sure you know all these stats by now, but for those of you recently returned from the dark side of the moon, Murray leads the head-to-heads between these two 8-7. But Federer has beaten him - nay, battered him - on both their previous Grand Slam final meetings. Blistering forehand drive from Murray, thwacking reply from Roger long. So much tension already in the air that it feels like the start of the fifth set rather than the first. Duelling exchange from the baseline, Federer... long again!

    Richard Krajicek , BBC Radio 5 live

    "You would expect Andy to start nervously but it was Roger who looked nervous, three errors on his favoured forehand. Now let's see how Murray deals with being ahead."


    Mags, Inverness, on 81111: "Tense! Anxious! And peeking at the telly from behind a pillow...."

    Tim Henman , BBC Sport

    "It's good to know Federer is human as well. That last drive volley missed by a long way and that's an ideal start for Murray."

    Murray* 1-0 Federer

    Federer to serve first. Bright sunshine, giddy atmosphere. Crunching backhand return from Murray, Federer long - Murray has the first point of the match, and if he wins the last one, who cares what happens in between? Sweet volleying from the King of Centre - to 30-15 to boisterous applause, and he has plenty of support among the partisans. Wonky serving, challenge from Murray - suddenly it's 30-40, Fed coming in behind a simple drive-volley - he's stuck it long! Murray breaks Federer in his very first service game. From the sound around Centre, you'd think he'd invented free money.


    BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Mount: "Mur-ree, Mur-ree, Mur-ree" goes the chant as Andy follows the Fed out onto stage. A bit workaday as sing-song support goes, but I guess when you only come together six matches a year, you can't get too complex. Hang on, a group to my right have raised the bar with a chorus of One Andy Murray. Unlikely to be bettered to be honest."

    Richard Krajicek , BBC Radio 5 live

    "I'm happy it's finally starting. The buzz has been unbelievable since 09:30 this morning. I am feeling nervous, you can feel the tension in the air. If Federer goes back to being number one in the world it will be his best achievement ever. I never expected that."


    From Barbs Roberts on Twitter: "I feel slightly sick!"


    BBC Sport's Andrew Cotter on Twitter: "Murder She Wrote is on ITV. Nobody cares who did it this time Lansbury."

  182. 1410:  

    The 126th staging of the Lawn Tennis Championships, if you like your history. In 1877 Britain's Spencer Gore came away the winner, but I'm pretty certain that William Marshall, his opponent that day, hadn't won 16 Grand Slam tournaments. Deep breaths, shake out the legs - here we go...

    Jonathan Overend , 5 Live tennis correspondent

    "This is an extraordinary feeling right now, it's a day we though we'd never see. What an atmosphere here on centre court, 15,000 people ready to be part of history being made."


    From Dan C on Twitter: "Murray plays aggressively he wins, Murray plays defensively and respects Federer too much: 3-0 Federer. First set crucial."

    Tim Henman , BBC Sport

    "I thought Andy won the volume contest on the roars, when he went back to the baseline he got an unbelievable ovation. Against Federer he's going to need all the help he can get, it's going to boil down to the tennis aspect and who can deal with the situation best. He's certainly got to try to make Federer beat him with his backhand."

  186. 1406:  

    A moment many people thought they'd never see - a British man in a Wimbledon singles final. Either way we'll witness history today - Roger aiming for a record-equalling seventh championship, Murray to finally end Fred Perry's unwanted hoodoo. Wonderful atmosphere around Centre - Dirsy was right at 1301 (below): whenever you catch a spectator's eye, there's a definite I-can't-quite-believe-I'm-here fizzing between the two of you.

    Boris Becker , BBC Sport

    "This is the worst bit, just a few minutes to go. You have to control your emotions without losing focus. These boys are really on their toes right now. It's the moment they've been waiting for and in a few minutes they will have to refocus and concentrate on their game plan."

  188. 1402:  

    Standing ovation as Andy Murray and Roger Federer stride out, obsequious ball-boys a respectful distance back lugging their enormous racquet-bags. Why not? We've waited 76 years for this.


    From BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Mount/Henman Hill: "Even the pre-recorded arty bits of pre-match Andy Murray features are being cheered on the big screen. People happily taking up some horribly oblique viewing angles. Glasses charged. Sun out. Mood universally bullish. The Hill is dead, long live the Mount."


    Former England captain David Beckham chatting court side with Garry Richardson: "It's special, great for the fans, great for the people and to play Roger as well... Individual sports are definitely different from team sports, it's all about focus. Andy's been incredible throughout this tournament and so has Roger so it's going to be exciting. Every point is a penalty for these guys. Every point is important and every game is important. Today's a great day for tennis, a day that I'm going to enjoy and then we'll look forward to the Olympics, let's hope for a bunch of gold medals."

  191. 1358:  

    Movement in the corridors, flashes of white behind the glass - the gladiators are entering the colosseum...


    BBC Sport's Mike Henson on Murray Mount: "Even the pre-recorded arty bits of pre-match Andy Murray fluff being cheered on the big screen. People happily taking up some horribly oblique viewing angles. Glasses charged. Sun out. Mood universally bullish. The Hill is dead, long live the Mount."

  193. 1356:  

    Frantic applause around Centre - it's only the ball-boys coming out, but who cares? And here come the line-judges, Gatsby-smart as ever. Tick-tock tick-tock, we're almost there...


    From Dan on the ferry, via text on 81111: "Travelling back from a stag weekend on the Isle of Wight to Norwich, my head feels very heavy, I have 6 hours on possibly the worst train service, and I'm missing the most exciting televised sporting event in two generations, 5 sets that's all I'm asking for boys."


    From Matt, in Birmingham, seeking refuge in a car to escape torrential downpour, via text on 81111: "C'mon Murray. Victory today can start a summer of British success. Forgive my patriotism oh great Federer."


    A reminder that they've all come a'running to the Royal Box today - David Cameron, the Duchess of Middleton - I'm sorry, Kate Cambridge - Sir Alex Ferguson, Victoria and David Beckham... Great that Posh and Becks could get in. They've been camping out since Saturday afternoon, apparently, and barely moved from Court 18 throughout the whole of the first week.

  197. 1349:  

    By my watch, 11 minutes until the two players join us on court. How's the mood? Anyone else getting a sneaky five-set feeling?


    From Isaac Abdullah on Twitter: "You poor Brits. 74 yr wait for this shot. On the other side of the net - the greatest grass court player of all time. Not fair."

  199. 1346:  

    Did I say it was smashing it down? The sun has come out, and it's got its hat on. It's baking.

    John McEnroe , BBC Sport

    "First of all, we've been kidding about the weather and justifiably so because it's crazy, but there's comfort in knowing that it could be played indoors. Murray needs to be aggressive and he's doing a much better job with that. I'm picking Roger in four but if it went to a fifth set I would switch my allegiances to Murray."

  201. 1343:  

    It's the strangest thing, wandering around the corridors and galleries of Centre Court this afternoon. It all looks exactly as it always has; the seats are the same muted green, the stewards spiffy-smart, the paintwork as pristine as ever. But there's something tangibly different about the place - a mood, a hum of history, an expectation.


    Briton Jonny Marray, who won the men's doubles title with Freddie Nielsen on Saturday night, on how it will change his life: "I'll always have that at the end of my name, at least. I'll be playing better tournaments and have more opportunities in tennis but apart from that I don't think it will change much at all." Turns out Andy Murray sent him a congratulatory text after the win. "He said he was really happy for me and pleased," Marray told BBC Sport.

  203. 1338:  

    Umbrellas sprout like Technicolor mushrooms. A moment ago I popped down court-side to enjoy the brass band parping its way through a charming rendition of 'Flight of the Bumblebee'. To my left, a woman clutching a ham bap in each hand pretended to conduct them.


    From Rebecca Jones on Twitter: "No Scotsman has ever lost a Wimbledon singles final [in the Open era, anyway] #undefeated #lookingonthebrightside."

  205. 1332:  

    And a great start from me: with the roof suddenly opened, it immediately smashes it down with rain. Is that some sort of omen? Everything else seems to be...

    Greg Rusedski , BBC Sport

    "I think the winner of the first set goes on to win the match."

  207. 1329:  

    Righto, it's time to hand you over to Tom Fordyce, whose role is to take you through to the close. Enjoy it, it might not happen again for 74 years...


    From Ben Vokes on Twitter: "Come on Murray!! Only a legacy of polo shirts, a bronze statue and national worship await."


    Ness T on Twitter: "So the the nation is divided this afternoon into #twotribes. Petrolheads #bbcf1 and Pimmsheads."


    Australian tennis great Rod Laver talking to John McEnroe on BBC Sport: "Murray plays a safe game a little bit too long, rather than continually putting pressure on. Just floating returns back gives opponents a breather and allows them to be more aggressive. When he's up 40-30, he sometimes just plays it back - that's when you put your foot down and make sure you win. That's the one thing I think he's missing."

  211. 1325:  

    The Duchess has arrived with her sister - not my Duchess, the Duchess of Cambridge, with Pippa. Here's Roger now on the box, taking us through his previous Wimbledon triumphs - and the big one that wriggled off the hook in 2008...

  212. 1322:  

    On BBC One now we've got Wimbledon legend John McEnroe chatting to his hero and another Wimbledon legend Rod Laver. The Aussie, a four-time Wimbledon champion, implores Murray to be more aggressive and picks out Federer as perhaps the greatest of all time - apart from him, of course.


    From Paul, Nottingham, via text on 81111: "I will be supporting Fed. Nothing to do with nationalism. Just that he is arguably the greatest sportsman that has ever lived and he carries himself with pure class. As most top sportspeople he makes his art look easy and is a joy to watch. It will be an absolute privilege to see him in action today."

  214. 1317:  

    Rumours filtering through that Murray's coach Ivan Lendl has registered his first smile for 14 years, although because it happened in his sleep it won't go down on the official records, as presumably it was dream-assisted. Three-time champion John McEnroe, 1987 champion Pat Cash and four-time semi-finalist Tim Henman are waxing lyrical about past times on the box, which is always nice...


    From Tom, Birmingham, via text on 81111: "Can we have one more shout out for Marray and Nielsen. What an amazing story. Top blokes who thoroughly deserved their win."


    From Peter Wilson on Twitter: "Having experienced Henman Hill for the first time last wknd I wish I was there today with a tea tray today. It would be so fast."

  217. 1313:  

    Clive Lindsay, of BBC Scotland, has given us a very personal take on Andy Murray's march to the final: "Long before Andy and elder brother Jamie were even proverbial twinkles in mother Judy's eye, I could see myself kneeling in joy on that hallowed turf having whipped the backside of whoever was likely to follow in the footsteps of my hero Ken Rosewall..."

    John McEnroe , BBC Sport

    On Roger Federer: "The guy's amazing but that aura of total invincibility he had for three or four years ago is over, so Andy needs to impose himself."

  219. 1306:  

    Murray leads Federer 8-7 in head-to-heads, but strangely they have only ever played each other on hard courts. We've got 53 minutes now until the rivals walk onto Centre Court...

    Tim Henman , BBC Sport

    "I never had a problem sleeping before any of my matches but last night I slept terribly. This whole build up is huge, it's intense. I'm sure Andy will be aware of his history. It's amazingly poised and there's so many people excited to watch this. I don't think anyone knows which way it's going."

    Miles Maclagan , BBC Radio 5live

    "Much has been made of Andy Murray's fitness, it is something that he has advertised, you hear him talk about it, working hard on it and he wants other people to know about. But Roger is a guy that you never see in the gym, he stays at differerent hotels. He has obviously been taken deep into some hard five-set matches so he is in great shape, but it all adds to the mystique of Roger Federer."

  222. 1301:  

    As you stroll the corridors of Centre Court, you occasionally catch the eye of a punter and you exchange a look that says: "You lucky, lucky so and so." The Archbishop of York has taken to Twitter to wish Murray luck and published a prayer for the tennis player on his website. Dr John Sentamu wrote: "Loving God we are so filled with hope by the Wimbledon final today! Guide Andy Murray in the choices that come to him with every ball. Make us all the best that we can be, by your Holy Spirit, through Jesus Christ, to the glory of God our Father. Amen." The Dalai Lama was unavailable for comment, although it is thought he wants Federer to take Murray to the cleaners.


    BBC Sport's Aimee Lewis on Henman Hill/Murray Mount: "Rubbish bins around the hill already filling up with disregarded plastic cups and I can tell you people haven't been drinking fizzy pop all morning. I do hope they've all got the day off tomorrow, for the sake of the nation's productivity, if nothing else. One gentleman flatly refuses to accompany his wife on a sludgy patch of lawn. "I'm not going anywhere near there," he says in a Glaswegian accent. I think he took one look at my now not so white loafers and decided to give the hill a miss. What about the bonhomie, Mr?"

  224. 1254:  

    I've just had a short wander outside and I can report that there are blue skies over Centre Court, which gives the organisers something of a dilemma: to roof or not to roof? That is the question.

    Miles Maclagan , BBC Radio 5 Live

    "Federer's serve in big moments is a key part of his game. If you could look at the accuracy of his serving in the big moments then I think that it would be off the charts. He really does have a big-money serve to rely on."


    From BBC Sport's Aimee Lewis out and about at Wimbledon: "Jude Law has just passed me. Shades on. Shorter than you'd expect but they always are. It's stopped raining so he's forgiven for the shades."

  227. 1247:  

    We asked for questions for our BBC pundits, and now we have some answers:

    Aron Jackson ‏@AronJackson: "Why do you think it's been so long since a GB finalist at Wimbledon?" Andrew Castle: "I haven't got long enough to answer that question - Twitter is only in 140 characters."

    Robert M ‏@BertMont: "If Roger Federer wins today, he returns to No1. What has he changed in his game to 'overtake' Rafa and Novak?" AC: "Nothing. He's just become unbelievably consistent over the last few months, and he desperately wants to add to his Grand Slam total. Possibly he's more aggressive now and again. That's all."

    Michelle Whitlock: ‏@LittleMissNutz "Would you agree that this years #Wimbledon has been one of the most exciting with many unexpected results?" AC: "It was a little bit slow until the evening that Rosol defeated Nadal, and then I think it absolutely took off. Federer against Benneteau was a highlight and every Murray match of course."


    From Ryan Greenaway on Twitter: "I'll be watching #bbctennis from Disneyworld today (other Worlds are available). In return for this freedom, the wife has the credit card!!!"


    BBC Sport's Aimee Lewis is out and about: "A couple of northern lasses are enjoying nibbles and a glass of wine in the picnic area behind the hill. Two brollies covering the olives and the like. They're not too bothered about jostling for position on a now boggy hill as they've got Centre Court tickets. The Lucky so and sos. "We've had two or three offers for them but we're not interested in selling," says Julie from Sheffield. "My children wanted the tickets and my husband wanted me to sell them so we've been keeping them well hidden! We're so lucky to have them. My heart wants Murray to win but I'm not sure if he'll do it."


    Telegraph chief sports writer Paul Hayward on BBC Radio 5 live: "I will be writing thousands of words no matter what the result will be. Every newspaper in the country will be cleared to tell the story of how he did it if Murray wins Wimbledon. My industry is in meltdown."

  231. 1242:  

    We've got drier weather coming in! Courts will be uncovered shortly, although I'm not sure what's happening with the Centre Court roof. Just been announced over the Tannoy that they're closing the Wimbledon shop early today... not sure that's too bright - if you're going to buy a giant pink tennis ball for 18 quid, today is probably the day...


    From Elaine, Glasgow, via text on 81111: "Saltire is out, flags painted on my face and union jack nails. Murray mania is here. heading to the tennis club for pimms and strawberries+cream, hoping to be partying later. CMON ANDY!!!!"


    From Claret Charlie on Twitter: "One thing worse than seasonal tennis fans are snobbish tennis fans whining about seasonal tennis fans."


    Singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran, whose songs Andy Murray has been listening to during his Wimbledon campaign, on BBC Radio 5 live: "I never have really seen my music as motivational but I'm glad that it has been doing a job for Andy. I met him at one of my shows in Miami a few months ago, he's a really nice guy and so I have been following his progress since then. He has a lot of pressure on him today, but I hope he can remove all that and enjoy it all."


    From Jack Wakefield on Twitter: "Sitting in a bar in Uganda, the locals are trying to claim Federer is half South African... Come on Andy!!!"

  236. 1233:  

    Here's some chat from Edward Parkinson, director of ticket market place website Viagogo UK: "We could see tickets being offered for up to £45,000 for a pair." New Range Rover or Wimbledon final, darling? Some folk have it so good...


    From John, Canterbury, via text on 81111: "Let's all be realists, Murray has not won a set in grand slam finals against Federer. I wish him luck but I can see this being a day for the greatest player in the history of the game. "

  238. 1229:  

    Federer will return to the world number one spot if he wins, becoming the second oldest man behind Andre Agassi to take the top ranking. Just two men over 30 have won Wimbledon - Rod Laver, who was almost 31 when he won in 1969, and Arthur Ashe, who was just five days short of his 32nd birthday when he was champion in 1975.


    From BBC Sport's Aimee Lewis on Twitter: "Rain brings session to an end. A smiling Murray departs to good wishes from everyone and the fans go crazy when they see the Scot. 'He winked at me! He winked at me!' says an excited fan as Murray leaves. Proper rain falling from the sky now. The rain is in the zone."

    Jonathan Overend , 5 Live tennis correspondent

    "I think his upbringing has made Andy what he is. His mother put the racquet into his hands at a young age up in Dunblane and tennis was his life. There were lots of long drives down into England to play tournaments with Judy always at the wheel. His parents split at quite a young age and that was something that Andy had to get his head around. We don't here as much from Willie Murray, but quietly behind the scenes I think he is just as much a factor as Judy has been."


    From BBC Sport's Aimee Lewis on Twitter: "Lendl has a joke with a presenter. Poor old chap was talking to the camera when Lendl interrupted. Lendl still laughing. In good spirits."

  242. 1221:  

    "It's an absolute filthfest," says Tom Fordyce as he clatters his way into the commentary box, referring to the weather. A short window allowed Murray to knock up for a few minutes, but he's off again, it's hosing it down out there...


    Dale Bray on Twitter: "Why support someone based on their nationality? Fed plays the most beautiful tennis I've ever seen."

  244. 1214:  

    BBC colleague and chief sportswriter Tom Fordyce has teed up a feature to wet your whistle: "Bunny Austin's fate is a pertinent if sepia-toned case study. Having won his semi-final back in 1938 he was then horribly mangled by Don Budge in the championship match, winning just four games in his straight-sets defeat." It gets chirpier...


    Dan Goodwin on Twitter: "If Fed conjures up the same form that got him through on Friday, I can see this ending in three sets sadly. But c'mon Andy!"


    Viv Towers on Twitter: "Get the feeling that if AM can get through the first three sets his fitness and new-found fighting spirit will see him through to glory."

  247. 1203:  

    An interesting development on the weather front, with news that Andy Murray is knocking up on practice court 15, ie. outside...


    Mark Conway on Twitter: "Not impressed with the number of British people supporting Fed, show a bit of national pride and get behind Murray."

  249. 1201:  

    What was going on in the summer of 1936, other than Fredd Perry winning Wimbledon? Max Schmeling knocked out Joe Louis in the 12th round of their heavyweight world title fight at Yankee Stadium, while on a rather more sour note, the Spanish Civil War was kicking off. Jesse Owens won 100m gold at the Berlin Olympics, while Thomas Jefferson's head was unveiled at Mount Rushmore. Richard Wilson, of One Foot in the Grave fame, was born on 9 July, which is tomorrow. He's Scottish - perhaps a sign?


    Ross Moffatt on Twitter: "No Scotsman has ever lost a Wimbledon singles final."


    Aaron in Nottingham texted: "Sat in my tennis club. The tension is building, can't wait for the match but the fan base is split 50/50 between Murray fans and Federer fans. Maybe we should quickly settle this on court before the main even! come on Murray! "


    Chris in London on 81111: "The pressure on Andy is nothing! First day as a waiter yesterday, first job was to serve the bride & groom their first meal as a couple. Can't tell you how nervous I was when I walked past the bride with a bowl of piping hot tomato soup!"

  253. 1145:  

    Young David Ornstein has pulled together an analysis piece on the big match, talking to Tim Henman, John Lloyd, Brad Gilbert, Mark Petchey and Todd Martin, basically a "where it will be won or lost" feature. Murray's former coach Gilbert says: "Forehand, return and serve - the three areas in which Murray must excel if he is to beat Federer. It's crucial he plays aggressive and continues to show a positive attitude."


    Sam Oakes on Twitter: "Nothing but respect for the great champion Federer, but today I have to support Andy. Please don't crumble!"

  255. 1139:  

    It has been suggested to me that I should implore you to send more questions to our BBC pundits, via Twitter on #bbctennis. A sign of how bad the weather is is that camera crews have been banned from Henman Hill - helf and safety, innit. On the plus side, the weather has also provided a good excuse for journalists to turn round to editors and say: "Vox pops? Vox populi? 'Voice of the people?' Have you not heard of Twitter?"


    BBC Sport's Aimee Lewis is wandering around outside: "Travis's 'Why does it always rain on me' blasting out from the public address system near Court 14. It's going down a treat! A middle aged couple wiggle their hips as Fran Healy hits the tops notes. Admittedly, they're no Snakehips Justin Timberlake but I like they're style. The lady in question even raises her arms in the air (like she just don't care). And as the song ends the drizzle stops and there's a momentary glimpse of sunshine before the enigmatic orb hides in the clouds once again."


    Jack Davies on Twitter: "If Murray does not serve above 60% today, he can say goodbye to winning his maiden Grand Slam title."


    Gary Lineker on Twitter: "Admittedly they're in the minority but don't get the anti-Murray brigade. He's a brilliant sportsman who gives everything. ‪#comeonAndy‬."


    Graham, from London on 81111: "Getting married in 12 days and won tickets in the ballot for today's final as did my uncle. I'll be there with my gorgeous fiancee, uncle and my brother (best man). A perfect July coming up - c'mon Murray. "

  260. 1132:  

    Royal Box alert: we've got Cambridge (Duchess of), P Middy, Cameron (Dave), Salmond, Boris, Laver, Redgrave and Posh Spice and husband David.

  261. 1127:  

    Tempers fray in the BBC Centre Court office about whether it's permissable, as a Brit, not to like Andy Murray. It's a rather decrepit argument and one I am not prepared to have at this stage. And just as I write, a woman friend from Scotland chucks a grenade into the mix via text: "I wanted big Tsonga to win. He's fit." Remarkable...


    Dom Collingwood on Twitter: "On my way to Stansted for worst-timed flight in British sporting history: the 1355 to Limoges. Can pilots access text updates?"

  263. 1117:  

    I should stress that while my colleague David Ornstein has stated these were Andy Murray's last words before the final (see below), in the interest of BBC transparency, I should relate that Murray's actual words before the final will probably be something more prosaic, such as: "Can you get me a banana?" Covers coming off on Centre Court, but only because the lid's on...


    BBC Sport's David Ornstein on Twitter: '"I can guarantee I'll fight my absolute heart out" - Andy Murray's last words before the Wimbledon final."

  265. 1112:  

    The roof is on Centre Court and with the rain set to stick around, it looks like the lid might remain on all day... Elijah Ortiz-Herrera is the lucky boy who will be performing the coin toss this afternoon - eleven years old, Elijah will be representing the Make-A-Wish Foundation UK, a charity that grants magical wishes to children and young people fighting life-threatening conditions. Eiljah is living with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia. Enjoy the tennis son, you're in for a treat.

  266. 1103:  

    Nine-time women's singles champion Martina Navratilova was on Desert Island Discs this morning, and I'm told it was quite emotional: Navratilova broke down in tears as she described her "regret" that her parents missed her first Wimbledon win and how the Duchess of Kent later helped her mother cross the Iron Curtain to see her claim another title.


    From BBC Sport's Aimee Lewis on Henman Hill/Murray Mount: "Miniature bottles of bubbly is the breakfast of choice on the hill and a certain tipple which is served with cucumber is flowing from the pumps. Eric Northcote has dusted down his kilt and the Scot from Ayrshire is contemplating giving up his Court One tickets to watch his man on MurrayMount.

    "'We're keeping our options open but I think we'll stay here," he says. To be fair, he does have prime position in front of the big screen. "All of Scotland are behind him and I hope all of England too." So even people with tickets to a court are opting to watch from the hill..."


    Gavin Simpson on Twitter: "If there are any shouts of 'c'mon tim' @ Wimbledon today, I may have to reconsider my views on independence."

  269. 1055:  

    We're expecting audience figures of 28 billion for today's match, which is almost exactly four times the population of the world. How this will happen, nobody will be able to explain, but they're the sorts of numbers bandied about by the organisers of the Super Bowl every year (always a mystery, considering I know not a single person who's interested in American Football).

  270. 1049:  

    Shame Andy Murray isn't still kitted out by Fred Perry, but the man whose name is on clothes worn by Mods has a few bits and bobs in common with the Scot: supremely talented, not part of the tennis establishment, a little bit chippy, although I get the feeling Fred liked to put it around a bit more than Andy. Perry, something of a playboy in the 1930s, he was involved with actress Marlene Dietrich before brief marriages to film star Helen Vinson, model Sandra Breaux and Lorraine Walsh. Get in there, Fred.


    Josh texted in on 81111: "I was supposed to have a cricket match but I've said I'm 'ill' to watch it! COME ON MURRAY!"


    Tim Rogers on Twitter: "I'm at work in a bookies, so much patriotic betting going on. ‪#ComeOnMuzza‬."


    Nick Duly on Twitter: "Trying to convince my German host family to watch the tennis. Instead they want to go out cycling in the rain..."

  274. 1040:  

    The latest betting has Federer the 1-2 favourite with most bookies, with Murray 7-4. I'm actually a little bit surprised by that, I thought a tide of patriotic betting might have brought the Scot in a bit. Then again, odds, schmodds - at times like this, always remember Buster Douglas: 42-1 to beat Mike Tyson with the only Vegas casino taking odds and we all know what happened next. You don't? Look it up on Wikipedia...


    VC Aneke on Twitter: "On a Drillship off the coast of Monrovia, Liberia. Woke up a few times last night, thinking I had missed the match!"


    Emily Mullis on Twitter: "We've invited loads of friends over to have strawberries and cream and scones to watch the final! It's gonna be sweet!"

  277. 1030:  

    As a BBC employee it is my job to be honest, so I have to tell you it's not exactly the maniacal free-for-all you might have expected outside: prospective campers have rather been hosed off the grass by the weather - it crashed down all night - and when I entered the complex it was just like any other day at Wimbledon. Gates being opened now, don't expect any knife fights...

  278. 1026:  

    Alas, the last British man to win the men's singles title at Wimbledon, Fred Perry, and the last British man to reach a final, Bunny Austin in 1938, are no longer with us. However, their kids are and reckon their old dads would have been proud of Murray: "I think he'd be thrilled that someone in a Jubilee year, an Olympic year in London, has achieved what Andy has," said David Perry. "He'd be delighted somebody has finally got a shot at the title. Dad would have said: 'It's been 76 years, it's time for somebody else to get there'." Said John Austin: "My father would be delighted and Murray is such a good player. He deserves it - what a great result."


    Simon Richardson on Twitter: "The beauty of Murray v Federer is that I am going to be deliriously happy whoever wins! Cmon Andy! Cmon Roger!"


    Julian Weatherall on Twitter: "Really can't see Murray overcoming the technical genius that is Federer. Actually, I don't want him to either."

  281. 1016:  

    As you'd expect, plenty of preview content splattered all over the BBC Sport website today. Murray's penned his penultimate column - I'm told he wrote it by hand, with a quill and ink, by the light of a candle - while BBC pundits and Fleet Street journalists have piled in to tell us what might happen when Murray and Federer finally get it on. Says former British number one John Lloyd: "Logic will say Federer should win but I think Murray will do it. He's going to get enough balls back in awkward positions and, over five sets, he's one of the great defenders."

  282. 1008:  

    Lobbing it down overnight, although thousands have been camping out in the hope of getting a decent vantage point on Henman Hill. One woman said: "We got drowned out really. We woke up in a pond inside the tent. My husband said: 'You can see it all on the telly. I said 'yeah, but it won't be the same'. The gates open at 1030 BST and it sounds like it will be survival of the fittest. Let's hope it doesn't get nasty and turn into a massive riot.

    Murray's former coach Mark Petchey tells BBC Radio 5 live:

    "Having [coach] Ivan Lendl with him is huge. Having somebody who was there, trying to win their first title, also two sets to love down when they won their first title as well. I think will be a huge benefit for Andy, if things don't go well at the start of the match as well.

    "So, today and yesterday is all about trying to keep your routine. I know it's always a bit of a cliche. But that's exactly what it is. It's about not trying to change anything, not making it bigger than it is. And I think that's why Andy, after the semi-final, was very quick to put the lid on any emotion out there and just acted the way that he is. And that's the one thing I love about Andy. He's consistent."

  284. 1004:  

    Morning, or whatever it may be wherever you're logged on from. We have a tennis match at Wimbledon today that will bring Great Britain to its knees - Andy Murray, bidding to become the first home winner of the men's singles title since Fred Perry in 1936, up against six-time champion Roger Federer on Centre Court. Kicks off at 1400 BST, grim outside, looks like we might have our first indoor final.

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