Andy Murray: Winning Wimbledon is 'pinnacle of tennis'

 

Andy Murray said winning Wimbledon and ending Britain's 77-year wait for a men's champion was the "pinnacle of tennis".

The 26-year-old Scot converted his fourth championship point to beat top seed Novak Djokovic 6-4 7-5 6-4 in what Murray described as a brutal match.

"Winning Wimbledon, I can't get my head around that. I still can't believe it's happened," said the British number one.

"I think that last game will be the toughest I'll play in my career."

Murray's victory

  • Wimbledon is Murray's second Grand Slam title after he won the 2012 US Open
  • It is the 36th time a British man has won the Wimbledon singles title - more than any other nation
  • Fred Perry was the last British man to win Wimbledon, completing a hat-trick of wins in 1936
  • Harold Mahony was the only other Scotsman to win the Wimbledon singles title - in 1896
  • Murray is the most successful British man in terms of Grand Slam match wins with 113, ahead of Fred Perry on 106
  • Fred Perry won eight Grand Slam titles - three Wimbledons, one French Open, three US Opens and one Australian Open
  • Murray has reached seven Grand Slam finals, behind Fred Perry on 10

Murray squandered three championship points from 40-0 and saw off three Djokovic break points before the world number one netted a backhand to end a gruelling contest lasting three hours and 10 minutes.

"Winning Wimbledon is the pinnacle of tennis, the last game almost increased that feeling," added Murray, who has won Olympic gold, the US Open and now his second Grand Slam title since losing last year's Wimbledon final.

"That last game pretty much took everything out of me. I worked so hard in that last game. They will be the hardest few points I have to play in my life. Some of the shots he came up with were unbelievable.

"I didn't know what was going on [during that last game]. There were a lot of different emotions at that time."

Murray, Scotland's first Wimbledon singles champion since Harold Mahony in 1896, thanked his coach Ivan Lendl for believing in him.

Lendl, an eight-time major winner but never a Wimbledon champion despite reaching two finals, started coaching the Scot last year.

"He stuck by me through some tough losses and he's been very patient with me, I'm just happy for him," said the world number two, whose Wimbledon victory earned him a first prize of £1.6m to take his 2013 earnings so far to over £3.3m.

"He's always been very honest with me and told me exactly what he thought and in tennis that's not easy to do in a player/coach relationship.

"He's got my mentality slightly different going into matches."

Tom Fordyce's view

"The Wimbledon title has been the lost ark of British sport, the holy grail thought gone for good. For it to be reclaimed in straight sets, just as it had last been won by the great Fred Perry, was the final bewildering twist in a tournament where so much made such little sense."

On Britain's hottest day of the year, the court-side thermometer on Centre Court read 40C and the temperature, added to the fearsome exchanges between the two finalists, contributed to what the second seed described as an "incredibly demanding match".

"It was so tough, it was so hot as well. I hadn't played any matches in the heat of the day," said Murray.

"Since the clay-court season, since I missed the French Open with my back, it had been cool. I hadn't played at all in those sort of conditions.

"The first few games were brutal as well. It was 30 minutes for the first four games."

Murray, convincingly beaten in the first four Grand Slam finals he competed in, said perseverance has been the story of his career.

He also admitted that being the standard-bearer for the sport in Britain was "really hard".

"For the last four or five years it's been very tough, very stressful, a lot of pressure," he said.

"The last two days were not easy because it's just everywhere you go.

"It's so hard to avoid everything because of how big this event is but also because of the history and no Brit having won [for so long]. It's been very, very difficult."

Highlights - Murray wins Wimbledon title