Murray’s Year As Nadal Suffers?

28 06 2011

Well its that one time in the year when the average Brit suddenly starts becoming an expert on tennis before lapsing back into whatever sport of choice is normally theirs – be it football, rugby, cricket or something more arcane. With that in mind we are going to follow suit and comment on this year’s Wimbledon and in particular Andy Murray.

We are not, as a general rule, enormous fans of Mr. Murray’s – he seems a little grumpy, a little petulant for us to really warm to him – however, petty grumbles aside, it is usually the case that we get behind him for Wimbledon as it would be a fantastic thing to see a man from these isles win what is still arguably the preeminent tennis open around. Whether he can or not is another matter…

Excellent player that he is we have long felt that he is still a level below the greats of the modern game in Federer and Nadal and possibly – on this year’s form anyway – below Djokovic too. For him to win a major title we suspect that he is going to have to take advantage of some miraculous piece of fortune and, with Nadal almost retiring at the end of his first set against Del Potro due to an ankle injury and with an MRI scan to come today, this could perhaps be it.

One of the things that separates Nadal from the crowd however is his extraordinary mental strength and this was never more evident than last night when despite being in pain, he battled on and in the end won convincingly. Nadal is something of a bête noire to Murray and, unlike Federer against whom he has a good record, the CH always wonders if this means that he is starting off on the back foot. It is possible that the knowledge Nadal isn’t fully fit might give him the extra boost needed.

Having said all this though, we are rather jumping the gun as both Murray and Nadal need to beat some excellent opponents before this possible match up can occur – maybe the interestingly named Mardy Fish could do Murray a favour or, possibly, the excellent Lopez might do for Murray too.

On the other side of the draw, we – like the rest of the world – have been highly impressed by Tomic although our initial liking of him was tempered by the fact he was an Australian.* We would not be surprised if he reached the final – a big call we know considering the second and third seeds stand in his way- yet with the way he has been playing anything is possible.

In reality though, if Murray were to lose, the one man we would like to see win it is Federer. Despite the fact that he has about 65,483 major titles and possibly by rights we should be supporting some other mere mortal, Federer’s grace on and off the pitch has always meant we are massive fans of his. He has not been the indomitable force he once was over the past year or so and any Open title at this stage of his career should probably be considered a bonus – the cherry on top if you like.

Despite the rain this has been an excellent Wimbledon so far, possibly due the fact it feels like there are more contenders than in years past and we are looking forward to the business end of the tournament with some anticipation.

*We don’t of course hate the Aussies – it’s just that when the opportunity presents itself for a bit of Anglo-Aussie banter we can’t help ourselves! 

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One response

28 06 2011
Chris

Thanks CH, It seems to me that Andy Murray has been given some much needed PR coaching, previously it seemed he didnt mind what the British public thought. This year he has gone the extra mile to befriend us, even the BBC website has his comments following his win. Mentioning David Haye and his Mum, even a bit of humour thrown in! So perhams he will win our support this year! Or if he gets to a final i might still wear a Swiss shirt!

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