Belfast Telegraph

Judy Murray says Strictly Come Dancing rebuilt her confidence

She found criticism and public scrutiny difficult.

Judy Murray has said her time on Strictly Come Dancing helped to rebuild her confidence after she suffered from public scrutiny as her tennis player sons became increasingly famous.

The tennis coach was partnered with Anton du Beke in the 2014 series of the dancing competition and made it through to the eighth week before she was eliminated during the Blackpool episode.

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Judy Murray found her confidence on the dancefloor (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

Murray said the show helped her feel better after she suffered criticism over her involvement in son Andy’s career.

She told Good Housekeeping: “I was buying milk in my local shop when I saw a newsagent’s billboard saying ‘Boris Becker tells Andy to ditch his mum’. I was so embarrassed, I turned around and went straight home.

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Murray suffered in the spotlight (Nicky Johnston/Good Housekeeping)

“I thought ‘People will think he knows what’s he’s talking about. She must be a nightmare’. He would have no thought at all about the impact that would have on me.”

Murray added that she also suffered an uncomfortable experience at the Scottish Sports Awards, telling the magazine: “I was dreading going up, but Andy wasn’t in the country and it’s very rude if there’s no one to collect the award.

“The presenter actually said on stage: ‘Couldn’t he [Andy] have bought you something decent to wear?’ After that, I vowed never to get caught out again. I turned down most things, as I was too self-conscious and I didn’t want to risk getting it wrong again.

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Judy Murray looking glamorous at the Sports Personality of the Year Awards 2013 (David Davies/PA)

“If I couldn’t get out of going, I would sit in the loo with the door shut until they called everyone through. It’s not my world. I didn’t have money for clothes. I had no interest in dressing up. It was horrible.”

She continued: “[Strictly] helped a lot because, up until that point, you get used to seeing horrible pictures of yourself in the paper portraying you as grotesque or aggressive.

“It helped me to stop feeling that everyone thought I was a nightmare pushy mother.”

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Judy Murray said Strictly Come Dancing helped her (Nicky Johnston/Good Housekeeping)

The full interview appears in the August issue of Good Housekeeping, which is on sale on July 5.

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