So ‘The Independent’, published an article on Sunday 16th September 2012, approximately 6 days after Andy Murray won his first slam tennis tournament. This article purported to be an ‘apology’, and I use the word very loosely. To say I was absolutely livid is an understatement, which is my reason for this rant. Before I continue to rant, let’s have some ACTUAL facts, and also opinions from me, as a British/English follower of Andy Murray since he first hit the scene..
I know there are some folks in the UK who only watch Wimbledon, maybe at a push Queens as well. Like there will be some in the States that only watch the US Open. Then there are those who watch Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon, and US Open. In other words, all of the Slams. Me and hubby are none of these demographics. We watch televised tennis all season long, and there is a lot of tennis.
We felt like Andy Murray was our little secret. Before the big W. We knew how good he was. After all, his stats speak for themselves. For instance, there aren’t many players who have beaten Roger Federer more than he has beaten them. In fact there is only one other, Rafael Nadal. This in itself is a real accomplishment. Then we could look at what many consider to be the winning stats of a ‘choker’..
Since 2006, Andy Murray has been in 36 Finals. He has WON 24 of them. Many of these finals were ‘Masters 1000’ tournaments. The only tournament bigger is a slam. Pretty impressive I would say.
Let’s talk about the slams, in particular the finals that Andy got into, but didn’t win. Firstly, “YAY!! ANDY MURRAY GOT INTO A SLAM FINAL!!” This is the attitude in our house, but sadly not many others. Secondly only two people got into that final, and Andy was one of them.
In 3 of the 4 slam finals Andy didn’t win he was playing Roger Federer, arguably the best player that has ever lived. In the other he played Novak Djokovic who may have been in the best form of his life. This is an important piece of information for the people that call Andy a choker and this is why..
When Roger Federer won his first slam, it was against Mark Philippoussis, who had never won a slam.
When Rafael Nadal won his first slam, it was against Mariano Puerta, who had never won a slam. Do you see a pattern emerging..?
When Novak Djokovic won his first slam, it was against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who had never won a slam..
These are the three players who were above Andy Murray in the world rankings until last week. I would say that it is Mr Murray who had the most difficult job on his path to winning a slam, wouldn’t you?
Andy Murray’s career, so far has been phenomenal. The stats do not lie. Only 1 person can win a title and he has done just that, 24 times.
So.. The first thing that made me really angry about the article in The Independent was that their crappy opinions were formed from the opinions of others, not their own. Not very independent is it? More sheep like.
“My opinions of tennis players are formed by me ACTUALLY watching their matches. Therefore am I more qualified than you ‘The Independent’?”
The second thing that probably covers the rest of the article. If that was an apology I am the Queen of England. ‘The Independent’ reiterated what looks like every unfoundedly horrible, and factually incorrect comment they have written about Mr Murray, and shoved platitudes like ‘Apology’, and ‘sorry’. THIS ARTICLE WAS NOT AN APOLOGY. Maybe ‘The Independent’ thought the article was funny. If they did, whoever wrote the article should never consider a career in stand-up. ‘The Independent’ should be supporting Andy Murray at every turn. Not slamming him. He is arguably our greatest player to be, and he doesn’t deserve the constant rubbish that is written, and indeed spoken about him. Let’s not forget it’s not Andy Murray’s fault that we hadn’t had a slam winner in 70 odd years, yet the hopes of the nation rest on his shoulders many times a year. I fear it may now get worse, because he has the big W..
In finishing.. ‘The Independent’ has no right to celebrate Andy Murray’s US Open win. The feel good factor is reserved for his supporters only. The supporters that are happy that he gets to any stage of a tournament, regardless of the outcome, but hopeful of a good result. The supporters that are there all year round, or just at Wimbledon, or even just at slams. But supporters they must be. Would other countries treat their sporting hopes this way? I think not..