ANDY MURRAY(GREAT BRITAIN)
US Open 2012
Andy Murray ended the long wait for a men's singles Grand Slam champion from Great Britain when he triumphed at the 2012 US Open. It was a long and hard road to success for Murray. He arrived on the scene at Wimbledon 2005, where he lost a tight five setter to David Nalbandian in the third round. His fitness and stamina had let him down then, as they were to do several times over the next year or so. By 2008 physical stamina was no longer an issue for Murray. He played superbly to beat Rafael Nadal in the semi finals of the 2008 US Open to announce his arrival as a major contender at Grand Slams. However, he then succumbed disappointingly to Roger Federer in the final. At Wimbledon 2009 Murray's ultra cautious tactics led him to defeat against Andy Roddick in the semis. Murray returned to form at the 2010 Australian, where he beat an injured Nadal before playing a poor final against Federer. After losing to Nadal in the semis of Wimbledon, Murray lost early at the US to Stan Wawrinka. Murray benefitted from a favourable draw at the 2011 Australian and reached the final but lost easily to Novak Djokovic. Then Murray lost to Nadal in the semis of the French, Wimbledon and the U. S. Murray played one of his best matches in years in the semis of the 2012 Australian but lost in the end to Djokovic. At Wimbledon Murray became the first Brit to make the men's singles final since Bunny Austin in 1938, but he lost in four sets to Federer. Murray broke down in tears at the presentation ceremony as the pain of losing his first four Grand Slam finals was obvious for all to see. Ivan Lendl had begun coaching Murray at the start of 2012 and he knew more than anyone how it felt to lose your first four Grand Slam finals. However, Murray beat Djokovic in a scrappy U. S. Open final to finally join the Grand Slam winners club. Although Murray was fortunate that Djokovic played a poor match, Murray deserved the win for his sheer persistence. Also he held his nerve admirably when closing out the match. Less than a decade earlier Guillermo Coria had two championship points in the 2004 French Open final and lost. In 2004 Coria was the best clay court player in the world. Then he disappeared into obscurity. Murray could have become disheartened after losing the Wimbledon final, but instead he came back and won the next Grand Slam he played. In doing so he ended a 76 year wait for a British Grand Slam men's singles winner. Murray scored his first Grand Slam win over Federer in the 2013 Australian Open, but was outplayed by Djokovic in the final. At Wimbledon Murray took advantage of an under-par Djokovic and won most of the crucial points against him to win a long straight sets final. Murray became the first British men's singles champion for 77 years. The foundations were laid in 2012, when after being devastated after losing the Wimbledon final he beat Djokovic in the US Open final, a feat of extraordinary fortitude. Murray hadn't played much since the U. S. Open due to undergoing back surgery and lost in the 2014 Australian quarters to Federer in four sets. Now without coach Ivan Lendl, Murray lost in the French semis easily to Rafa Nadal. At Wimbledon he played poorly in losing to Grigor Dimitrov in the quarters and at the US Open lost in the quarters to Djokovic. At the 2015 Australian Murray returned to near his best form, but was outplayed by Djokovic in the final. At the 2015 French Open Murray showed his best ever clay court game and pushed on form Djokovic to a fifth set in the semis. Murray lost to Djokovic again in the 2016 Australian Open final, joining John Bromwich as the only men to lose five finals in the event's history (and unlike Bromwich, Murray did not win the event). At the French Open Murray beat defending champion Wawrinka to reach his first French Open final, but lost to Djokovic in four sets. At Wimbledon Murray won his second title beating Milos Raonic in the final in straight sets.
© GRAND SLAM TENNIS ARCHIVE
HEAD TO HEAD Win-Loss: M.Cilic 4-1, J.Del Potro 2-0, N.Djokovic 2-8, R.Federer 1-5, J.C.Ferrero 1-0, R.Nadal 2-7, A.Roddick 1-1, S.Wawrinka 3-3
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