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Jamie Murray hailed as GB's unsung Davies Cup hero

By Eleanor Crooks

Captain Leon Smith has praised Jamie Murray's contribution to Great Britain's Davis Cup run ahead of the final against Belgium, which begins tomorrow.

The doubles specialist had not played for Britain for almost four years when he was selected for March's first-round match against the USA.

Murray showed his improved form as he and Dominic Inglot almost pulled off a stunning comeback against Bob and Mike Bryan, but it is with brother Andy that he has really shone.

A week after reaching the Wimbledon final with Australian partner John Peers, Jamie was the stand-out player as he and Andy defeated the French at Queen's Club.

And on home soil in Glasgow in September, just after Jamie and Peers had made the final of the US Open, the Murray brothers won in five pulsating sets against Australians Lleyton Hewitt and Sam Groth.

British captain Smith said of Jamie's form: "It's fantastic. The doubles rubber is key and we've always been spoilt for choice, but in Jamie we have one of the best players in the world now.

"When you look back to the tie against France, he played unbelievable tennis. He was like a man on fire. And he's kept that going. This means an awful lot to both brothers, not just Andy."

Whoever Belgium play in the doubles rubber, with Steve Darcis and Ruben Bemelmans the favourites, it is tough to make a case for the hosts winning it.

The same can be said for both of Andy Murray's singles matches, so they will have to cause a big upset somewhere if they are to deny Britain a first Davis Cup title since 1936.

The big factor in Belgium's favour is that they are playing at home, as they have throughout their unexpected run to the final.

The indoor clay surface would not be what Britain would have chosen while 13,000 fans, 90 per cent of them Belgians, will be packed into the Flanders Expo.

The ATP World Tour Finals in London on hard courts was a complicating factor for both the Murray brothers but they practised on clay both before and after the tournament at the O2.

Smith must name his final four-man team before the draw this afternoon with Kyle Edmund and James Ward still vying for selection.

Belfast Telegraph


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