action:article | category:SPORTS19 | adString:SPORTS19 | zoneID:40

Home » Sports » Tennis

July 07. 2013 5:28PM

Wimbledon winner

Andy Murray ends long British drought with Wimbledon championship


Andy Murray of Britain holds the winners trophy on the clubhouse balcony after defeating Novak Djokovic of Serbia in their men's singles final tennis match at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships, in London Sunday. (REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett)

WIMBLEDON, England — As an adoring nation watched and roared, Andy Murray ended 77 years of frustration at Wimbledon by defeating No. 1-ranked Novak Djokovic, 6-4, 7-5, 6-4, on Sunday to become the first British man to win the singles championship since Fred Perry triumphed in 1936.

Murray, ranked No. 2 in the world, rode out a lull in the third set to win his first Wimbledon title and second Grand Slam event. He had previously won the U.S. Open in 2012, beating Djokovic for that honor.

The last British tennis player to win a singles title here was Virginia Wade, in 1977.

Murray, who lost the Wimbledon final to Roger Federer a year ago, was foiled on his first three championship points in the third set Sunday, in keeping with the long games he and Djokovic had played under a broiling sun. The game went to deuce four times before Murray finally prevailed, setting off roars in the stadium and, undoubtedly, around the country.

When Murray realized that Djokovic’s backhander had gone into the net and that the title was his, he pumped his fists and grinned. He hugged Djokovic, whom he has played against since they were both 11 years old, before kneeling on the grass in relief and exultation, eventually climbing toward the box where his friends and family sat. He began to descend toward the court for the awards ceremony and almost forgot to hug his tearful mother, Judy, but went back to hug her.

“I just heard her screaming behind me and I went back,” he said during an on-court interview.

In a nice moment, TV cameras caught Djokovic’s parents hugging Judy Murray.

Murray said he was simply glad to get through a grueling final game and final point as he held off an attempted comeback by Djokovic. Murray was only beginning to realize the magnitude of his feat in the first few moments after the match.

“It feels slightly different to last year,” Murray said, drawing a laugh from the crowd. “I hope you guys enjoyed it. I tried my best.”

Djokovic, the 2011 Wimbledon champion and a six-time Grand Slam tournament winner, had won his previous three matches against Murray — including at this year’s Australian Open — and each time had rallied after Murray had won the first set. But Murray, though vexed sometimes in the third set, wouldn’t be stopped this time.

“Congratulations to him and to you guys. I know how much this means to the country,” Djokovic said in an on-court interview. “I’m aware of the pressure that he gets.... It’s a great achievement.

“I gave it all. It was an absolute pleasure and honor to be part of this match, this final.”

The first set took 59 minutes and featured countless long rallies. Murray had three break points in the first game but Djokovic held him off; Murray had four more break points in the third game before finally getting that break for a 2-1 lead.

However, Djokovic broke back and then held for a 3-2 lead. Murray then gained another break, at love, after Djokovic sent a backhand into the net.

Murray double-faulted twice to start the eighth game, which went to deuce four times before Djokovic hit a long forehand and then a forehand into the net to give Murray a 5-3 lead.

Djokovic held his serve, but Murray won his service game at love and cashed in on his first set point when Djokovic sent a return wide.

Djokovic appeared to steady himself in the second set, breaking Murray in the fourth game and building a 4-1 lead. But Murray, pushed by the crowd at every turn, came back to level the set at 4-4 after converting the second of two break points in the eighth game.

Perhaps Djokovic was feeling the effects of his 4-hour, 43-minute, five-set semifinal victory over Juan Martin del Potro on Friday, the longest semifinal in Wimbledon history. He held service to take a 5-4 lead but committed a series of unforced errors that allowed Murray to pull even at 5-5 and then for Murray to break him for a 6-5 lead. The crowd, riding on every move, roared as Murray capitalized on his second break point and gave him a standing ovation when he hit an ace to win the next game at love to win the set, which took 69 minutes to complete.

Djokovic simply seemed to have nothing left as the third set began and Murray won the first two games, but Djokovic found the strength to push back. He won three games in a row to go up, 3-2, with the help of a volley by Murray that dropped just wide and allowed Djokovic to get the break.

Suddenly, Murray seemed to be feeling the pressure and Djokovic gained strength from it. Resorting to more drop shots that seemed to catch Murray wrong-footed, Djokovic broke Murray’s serve again for a 4-2 lead and there was no question that the momentum had drastically shifted toward

the Serb.

Murray halted that momentum by breaking Djokovic’s serve to cut his lead to 4-3. Murray pulled even at 4-4 with a running forehand on game point and then played out a great game to take a 5-4 lead, coming up with a beautiful passing shot to set up break point and winning the game when Djokovic hit a forehand into the net.


 NH Sports Angle » more
Links to news and happenings around the world of sports with a Granite State connection, updated daily.

Bill Belichick: Eagles joint practices ‘as productive as any’

Big Knockout Boxing has grown from NH debut to Las Vegas attraction

Toronto Blue Jays Minor League System: Philosophy change?

Spring trial likely for former UNH women's hockey coach

Special golf cart helping Vietnam veteran play game he loves article

And so it begins: Equipment distribution starts a new era in Plymouth football

Tailgating changes for UNH football games

Report: Pirates' pitcher Jeff Locke cleared in gambling probe involving childhood friend from Conway

Tim O’Sullivan: Even with NFL success, NH’s Kelly remembers his roots

Chip Kelly: 'Put some Galoshes on and go play'

Survey says Duke the most hated college hoops team in NH

Cheyenne Woods, Tiger's niece, trying to make big time article

Gorham papermill owner Lynn Tilton is getting Yale tennis award

Ex-bank president co-authors racing book

New England Patriots are the most hated NFL team in the world

Travis Hughes: It's time to drastically overhaul minor league hockey in North America

Portsmouth native, 47, conquers 21-mile swim of the English Channel

Bennett to take control of the flags for Granite State Pro Stock Series

Air Force captain serving in NH honored before Red Sox-Yankees crowd at Fenway

Newmarket woman second to run solo across the U.S.

VIDEO: A car's-eye view of the demolition derby at Cheshire County Fair

With NASCAR's $8.2B TV deal, nobody wants to be at back of pack

Kelly tinkers with Philadelphia offense

New Hampshire’s Sam Fuld traded back to A's

CAA preseason poll puts a target on New Hampshire, coach says

MORE

 New Hampshire Events Calendar
    

   » SHARE EVENTS FOR PUBLICATION, IT'S FREE!

Upcoming Events

 New Hampshire Business Directory

  

   » ADD YOUR BUSINESS TODAY!