Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 16 September 2014

The Queen leads tributes to tennis hero Andy Murray

Andy Murray celebrates during the medal ceremony for the Men's Singles Tennis match on Day 9 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on August 5, 2012 in London, England. Murray defeated Federer in the gold medal match in straight sets 2-6, 1-6, 4-6.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Andy Murray celebrates during the medal ceremony for the Men's Singles Tennis match on Day 9 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on August 5, 2012 in London, England. Murray defeated Federer in the gold medal match in straight sets 2-6, 1-6, 4-6. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
ASCOT, ENGLAND - JUNE 20:  Queen Elizabeth II after winning The Gold Cup  on Ladies' Day during day three of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on June 20, 2013 in Ascot, England.  (Photo by Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images for Ascot Racecourse)
ASCOT, ENGLAND - JUNE 20: Queen Elizabeth II after winning The Gold Cup on Ladies' Day during day three of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on June 20, 2013 in Ascot, England. (Photo by Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images for Ascot Racecourse)
Downing Street flying the Scottish Saltire to mark the occasion of Andy Murray playing in the Wimbledon final. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo.
Downing Street flying the Scottish Saltire to mark the occasion of Andy Murray playing in the Wimbledon final. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo.

The Queen and the Prime Minister led congratulations to Andy Murray as he became the first British tennis player to win the men's singles title at Wimbledon for 77 years.

The monarch sent a private message to the Scot following his emotional straight sets 6-4 7-5 6-4 victory over world number one Novak Djokovic, Buckingham Palace said.

David Cameron, who was in the Royal Box in the sweltering heat of Centre Court to see Murray's victory, said he had brought back memories of last year's London Olympics.

"It was fantastic, it was an absolutely brilliant performance, an amazing day for Andy Murray but also an incredible day for British tennis and for Britain," he told BBC News.

"He's an amazing player but what he showed today is not only how brilliant he is technically but also he's got this incredible courage.

"You are playing against Djokovic, who's the great artist of comebacks and never gives up and Murray just kept going.

"He was magnificent."

He added: "It felt like the Olympics, it felt like one of those moments when the whole country is watching and there is just an amazing sportsman who's dedicated his life and had wanted to win so badly and then just producing a performance that was exquisite."

A Buckingham Palace spokeswoman said: "I can confirm that the Queen has sent a private message to Andy Murray following his Wimbledon victory."

Other politicians joined the Prime Minister in congratulating Murray.

Scottish firm minister Alex Salmond, who was also in the Royal Box and unfurled a Saltire after the match ended, said it was a "truly phenomenal victory".

"Andy's determination to win was visible in every point and he delivered an outstanding result in a real clash of tennis titans," he said.

"His phenomenal performance against the world number one displayed incredible physical prowess and depths of mental fortitude.

"The shouts of "Come on Andy" were ringing all the way from Dunblane to SW19.

"Last year Andy Murray won the hearts of Wimbledon, this year he has won the championship and on today's form there will be many more victories to come.

"Novak Djokovic displayed typical grace and sportsmanship in defeat. But Andy has firmly secured his place in Scottish sporting folklore.

"He is one of the greats of the game and his success today will inspire a new generation of tennis champions."

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