Tuesday, 11 September 2012
New York City Boy
You feel the deal is real
You're a New York City boy
So young, so run
into New York City
At just after 2am British time a serve return hit slightly long by Novak Djokovic gave us the moment we had been waiting for since the 2009 US Open Final should us the potential of a skinny kid from Dunblane the opportunity to say British Grand Slam Final without using the words Fred Perry and 1936. That it should happen on the 76th anniversary of Perry’s last win (which was also at the US Open) and in in his fifth Grand Slam final (the same amount that it look his coach Ivan Lendl to win won) can be seen as nothing less than synergy, fate, destiny call it what you will. It was harder to see which emotion was the more prevalent, relief or joy, as he collected the Championship trophy with the accompanying $1.9M cheque secondary to what it represented.
Many, including myself, say Federer’s insistence that Murray’s loss at Wimbledon would make him a stronger player as an encouraging but mainly empty platitude but his turned out to be very much the case. Murray crushed Federer at the Olympics and held off Djokovic when the momentum seemed to be swinging very much in the favour of the Serbian. The statistics bore witness to exactly how close the game was. The score of 7-6 (12-10) 7-5 2-6 3-6 6-2 barely told the story of a match 4 ¾ hours long with both players winning over 155 points each and 25 games each. This was an epic tale of endurance mocking the modern footballer who is unable to play 2 matches of 90 minutes a week with Murray and Djokovic playing almost double that time 3 times a week during the tournament
Murray fully deserves the congratulations and praise that has come his way after 2 outstanding tournament wins this summer with the second capping off a magnificent summer of sport. He may even take home a 3rd when the SPOTY award comes up in November although he will face stiff competition from Bradley Wiggins, Jessica Ennis and Mo Farah and it may be that his quiet public demeanour will lose him that one although one suspects that Ivan Lendl may not be too displeased with that.
The challenge for Murray is building on this win to secure the other 3 Grand Slams during his career which will not be easy. Djokovic and Federer will want revenge and Nadal will surely have some impact on Murray’s ability to become World No. 1 when he finally returns from injury. Andy will need to repeat this level of skill and endurance on a regular basis given that he and Djokovic are the same age and within 1 ranking place of each other theirs is a rivalry that has several years and one suspects some outstanding games ahead.