Wimbledon Frenzy Begins as Murray Wins Queen’s Title
by Staff | June 14th, 2009, 9:56 pm

World No. 3 Andy Murray sent British fans into a frenzy and speculation rising as to his Wimbledon chances on Sunday when he became the first British man in 71 years to lift the trophy at the Queen’s Club ATP event in London, defeating American James Blake 7-5, 6-4 for the title.
“It’s pretty special,” Murray said. “There have been some great grasscourt players from Britain the last 70-odd years. Tim (Henman) and Greg (Rusedski) were both very good grasscourt players. The names that are on the trophy, there’s a lot of great, great players. So to be on that trophy is great. Obviously because it’s not happened that a British player has won for so long, that makes it nicer.”

At Wimbledon Murray will again attempt to become the first British men’s singles champion since Fred Perry in 1936.

“For me, if I go into a Grand Slam feeling confident and having won a tournament, regardless of whether it’s here or in Paris or the US Open, it’s good for my game,” Murray said. “I’m not planning on getting caught up in the whole hype and the pressure, because I don’t think that that helps if you do.”

Henman finished runner-up three times in 1999 (l. to Sampras) and 2001-02 (l. to Hewitt) at the Queen’s Club.

It was Murray’s fourth title in five finals this year.

Blake was looking for his first grasscourt title in his third final appearance after Newport in 2002 (l. to Taylor Dent) and at Queen’s in 2006 (l. to Hewitt).

“A match like this, top players, it comes down to a couple of points, who plays those big break points better,” Blake said. “I don’t think I saved one break point today. He just played those points a little better than me today. That’s frustrating, but when it just turns on a couple points here and there, I feel like I’m right there.”

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32 Comments for Wimbledon Frenzy Begins as Murray Wins Queen’s Title

huh Says:

Well done Andy Murray ! :)

skeezerweezer Says:

Same here well done Andy. Way cool to win for your home country. Blake, nice props for getting to the final and nice comments in the end. Only one critique? Did anyone see the trophy presentations? The runner up trophy looked like a weird very small candle and the winners trophy looked the the GOAT trophy. Quote from the tv announcer “one of the biggest trophies in the history of tennis” soooooo funny sorry it was just a little over the top as far as trophies go. I’m out

sports fan Says:

I believe they are going to place Andy Murray on the opposite side of Roger Federer at Wimbeldon this year hoping that Murray can beat Nadal and play someone other than Federer in the finals…….Personally, I do not think it is going to matter what the draw is like, because I do not see anyone including a 100% fit Nadal beating Federer this year……..Prediction

semifinals Fed def. Djokovic

semifinals Murray def. Nadal

Finals Federer def. Murray

Roger Federer= 15 major titles

5 US Opens
6 Wimbeldons
3 Australian Opens
1 French Open

Von Says:

I congratulated Murray on his win on the Roddick ankle thread, but to do so again won’t hurt, ergo, congrats to Andy Murray and his fans on his first Queens win!!

Colin Says:

Late yesterday I extended the pleasure of watching the match by looking up various online newspaper accounts. I quickly found a perfect example of the poisonous influence of the tabloids, British tabloids being some of the world’s worst.
The “serious” papers (Times, Telegraph, Independent)quoted what I accept as Murray’s actual comments, partly on the basis of radio clips from his press conference.
The Daily Mail online heading said that Murray “insists he can win Wimbledon”. What he actually said was “It’s not impossible”. That heading, maybe also in the print edition but I haven’t seen it, will certainly be pounced on by the large anti-Murray faction in the UK, and cited as proof of his “arrogance”.
The Daily Mail, I might mention, is well known historically for its enthusiastic support in the 1930s of Hitler, Mussolini, and the British Fascist Sir Oswald Mosley.

margot Says:

Colin: not just in the UK alas! But didn’t our boy done good!

jane Says:

Murray is getting awfully close to Federer in the rankings; only 1390 points separate them as of this morning’s rankings. So not only is the battle for number 1 heating up, but so is the battle for number 2. In fact, according to the ATP site “All four [top] ranking positions could change depending on the results at Wimbledon.”

MMT Says:

Oof, I get a headache when I think about the rankings – so many permutations. But Murray has to do better than the semi-finals (a tall order no matter which half of the draw he lands) to gain any points.

I have to say I very much enjoyed watching Murray play this week at Queens. Grass is really a great surface for him to showcase his variety both in shots and athleticism. It will be interesting to see how he handles the pressure, because last year it was all positive until he lost to Nadal and then suddenly he was a disaster. Those thoughts kind of went away after the final.

Interesting point – for years the claim of Henman supporters was, “why, oh why, does he have to always been in Sampras’ half of the draw?”

Well, in 2001 he was AGAIN in Sampras’ half of the draw (3rd time in 4 years) and he he beat Federer but lost sensationally to Goran Ivanisevic in the semi-final. In fact, he lost to the eventual champion at Wimbledon a total of 5 times in 8 years and in 7 of 8 years he was in the same half of the draw as the #1 seed.

This really pours cold water on the rigged draw theory – after all who would be a more likely beneficiary of draw rigging than Henman all those years.

sar Says:

I believe they are going to place Andy Murray on the opposite side of Roger Federer at Wimbeldon this year

Sports fan…isn’t it supposed to be random?

RZ Says:

Sports Fan and sar,
It is random. The only way Andy Murray would be almost guaranteed to be opposite Federer is if Nadal does end up withdrawing, in which case it would be extremely likely that Federer would be the #1 seed and Murray the #2 seed. Otherwise, the likelihood of Murray ending up opposite Federer is 50%.

margot Says:

For Murray fans here’s a nice quote from James Blake:” Andy’s hands are so good he can really do almost anything with the ball. He’s got the ability to beat anyone in the world and he’s definately a possibility to win Wimbledon.” He should know!
As a matter of fact I agree with Tejuz(?) on another thread, I think it’s a big ask for Andy to beat Roger and Rafa in the same slam! But what the heck there’s a possibility. How exciting!

MMT Says:

“…,I think it’s a big ask for Andy to beat Roger and Rafa in the same slam! But what the heck there’s a possibility. How exciting!”

In fact it’s never happened. Nobody has ever beaten both Rafa Nadal and Roger Federer in the same grand slam. Interstingly only 4 players have ever even been faced with the burden of beating both Federer and Nadal in the same grand slam tournament – Lleyton Hewitt and Fernando Gonzalez at the AO in 2004 and 2007, Andy Murray at the US Open in 2008 and Robin Soderling at the French Open in 2009.

margot Says:

MMT: How interesting! Hadn’t thought of this. Also that the two recent players, don’t know about other two, have dispatched Rafa and then been rather soundly beated by Fed.
However, am immensely cheered that Andy’s up there, only one of four, that’s even been able to have an attempt, must say something about him.

andrea Says:

don’t really know if beating james blake in a final is indicative of being able to win wimbledon, but if that’s the pre GS spin andy wants to give himself, go for it.

Kimmi Says:

I agree, it will be exciting at Wimbledon. Murray has a better chance this year than he has never been. Winning at Queens will give him the confidence he needed. It does not matter who he beat, he has proven he can hang in there with the big boys.

Need to say my congratulations to Murray. Great win at home at last.

sports fan Says:

RZ…….Yes, you are correct about it being 50%, but I just feel that somehow Murray will end up in Nadal’s half, but we will wait and see…….Who do you think will win if Murray plays Nadal in the semis…..And what is your prediction for Wimbeldon 2009?

vared Says:

I think it will be Nadal and Fed. Not sure about Murray or Djok even making it to the semis.

FoT Says:

Do you guys think Murray can handle the ‘extra’ pressure put on him by saying he’s one of the top favorites? I remember at the AO he came in on a high winning the pre-tournaments and being “the favorite” by a lot of people. Now, especially at Wimbledon, you know the pressure will be on him by – not only the fans – but the media and all the hype that will be riding on him to finally ‘win’ a grand slam.

It will be interesting. And lord help Murray if he fails early. I understand the British press and turn on you on a dime!

FoT Says:

Oops… that should have been “the British press CAN turn on you…”

huh Says:

Murray says, he’s the edge against Fed should they meet at Wimbledon. Let’s see if he can prove it. He even says that Fed’s always frustrated whenever Fed faces him. That should add fuel to their relationship of mutual depreciation. ;-) It’d be huge fun!

huh Says:

May be we should gear up to see the Nice li’l Murray vs Good ‘ole
Fed at Wimby !

MMT Says:

“Murray says, he’s the edge against Fed should they meet at Wimbledon.”

Where did Murray say this?

jane Says:

I’d be interesting to read the article in which Murray made that statement as well.

FoT, I agree that Murray was facing some pressure at the AO, but in all honestly I don’t think it fazed him more, nor that is was the reason he lost. I think he just ran into a very hot Verdasco and in addition he was fighting some sort of a cold/flu virus so his energy stores might’ve been depleted somewhat. I am not trying to make excuses for his loss. I do agree with posters who say Murray still occasionally does his mid-match “walkabouts” or goes off the boil. But I just don’t think his losing out when he did at the AO was down to pressure.

I think Murray actually feeds off the British support; I get the impression he likes the accolades, being the center of attention. I don’t know why I feel that way, but certainly his attitude on centre court at Wimbledon last year was one that suggested he enjoys soaking it up. Maybe I am mistaken; it’s just an impression.

jane Says:

Oops so many typos in the above post: “interested”, “honesty” “it”. I didn’t bother to proofread but hopefully it’s clear enough.

RZ Says:

Thanks for asking for my predictions. I think Andy Murray is a better player and more experienced than he was last year, and just for that I’d have to give him the edge over Nadal (though if Nadal hadn’t sat out since his loss at the French, I don’t think I’d have the same prediction). As for the whole shebang, I’m going with Federer, assuming he’s come off his F.O. cloud 9 and is ready to play.

margot Says:

MMT: there’s a bit of needle between Murray and Fed. Every time Andy has beaten Fed he’s been negative about Andy’s game. Also Andy is on record as saying Rafa is his favourite player, I think, from limited sources of information, Andy has genuine liking for Rafa. Latest quote Guardian today, 16th, Andy doesn’t say anything about beating FEd in 5. Just says he’s got confidence from his previous victories and “If I play my best I’ll have a chance to win,” which is fair enough.

MMT Says:

Thank Margo – on another thread a link was posted to an article that include the quote, and it didn’t quite say he had the edge over Federer at Wimbledon. I’m quite certain that Federer doesn’t like playing Murray because he has a good record against him, and because he does employ a style against him that works, and there’s no reason for him not to discuss that. In fact, I was quite critical of Federer for commenting on Murray’s style after his loss in Dubai last year, even though later in the year his mother wrote that Murray took Fed’s comments to heart and made some adjustments to his game. I think originally Murray himself said that is a style he employs against Federer because it works, but against other players he would play differently.

I think a match between Federer and Murray at Wimbledon would be fascinating – first, even though he is, in fact, Scottish, I think he would enjoy huge crowd support as a Brit, and the chance to create history on either side would make the contest hugely compelling.

Second, I think both of them play their best tennis on grass, and the variety of shots and angles would be fascinating.

Finally, it would give Murray a chance to “justify” his record against Fed, because up to now, he has only won matches that are not so important in either the prestige of the tournament in general or the impact it has on ranking. In this case it would help Andy gain significant points over last year’s results and could possibly give Federer a chance to re-take #1 because it would either be in a semi-final or a final.

I also think Murray is not a person to play mind-games; I don’t think he needles Federer at all. He simply answers questions directly, and there’s nothing wrong with that – Federer does it all the time.

BTW – I don’t even think Murray has to play “his best” to beat Federer. His “best” is much more aesthetically appealing than the methods he employs when playing Federer and it is those methods that I believe would give him the best chance to win.

margot Says:

MMT: I agree Andy M strikes me as being very straightforward and witout guile. what you see is what you get! Which I personally find very refreshing.I don’t know why people criticise his game either, it is so full of variety. Papers had some quotes about his chances today, Alan Jones said ” to be successful at Wimbledon Andy must overcome his safety -first approach that he adopted in the matches he lost at the Australian and Frech Open. On both occasions when the ptressure was on he handed the initiative to his oponents far too easily, especially against Gonzales. He needs to be brave.” I would add the last match v. delporo to this too. This is such stunningly good advice I really hope Miles Maclachlan reads it!

TejuZ Says:

margot, this is what Fed had criticized when he lost to Murray at Dubai last year. It sounds bitter from Fed, but it was an advice nonethless.. that if he needs to succeed at Grand Slams he has to take his chances and be aggressive cuz defensive approach can only take so far. Murray does have a good aggressive game when he plays it.. but he goes too much into defensive sometimes. Probabaly thats his inherent nature.. and when he is under-pressure he just wants to play safe and not take risk.

Imagine, had Federer done that against Haas on the break point in 3rd set.. he would have lost that match.

TejuZ Says:

And Murray’s best game is when he doesnt allow his opponents to play their best game. But if the opponent are in form, he just cant do anything much.. look at the Wimbledon encounter against Rafa last year. He was out-played totally or verdasco at the AU Open or Tsonga at last year AO.

huh Says:

MMT, if you honestly think Murray can beat Fed at Wim despite not playing his best tennis, then here you’re completely wrong. To get it, just look at last year’s Wim. Fed sans form was good enough to counter Rafa, what to speak of if Fed’d been in form !

vared Says:

Murray says, he’s the edge against Fed should they meet at Wimbledon

Nice job Murray to piss off Rogi! LOL

Here is an 8 page article on Rafa for NYTimes.

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