Thought for the day – Jonny Marray
When asked to describe how British his doubles partner is, Denmark’s Freddie Nielsen said simply, “ask him what he bought at the Wimbledon shop”. Marray, Liverpool-born but resident in Sheffield, revealed with a grin that he’d used his £75 Championships voucher to buy his sister a tea pot and some tea towels. Which just about sums him up.
An unassuming friendly sort dubbed by many as “one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet”, Marray made some history of his own at Wimbledon on Saturday, becoming the first British man to win the Gentlemen’s Doubles Championship since 1936. Alongside Nielsen, the first Danish man into a slam final of any sort since his grandfather Kurt played inthe men’s singles final here at Wimbledon in 1955, and the first Dane to win a grand slam title of any sort, ever. Having caused a tremendous upset by knocking out the Bryan brothers in the semi-finals on Friday, the wild card duo took their giant-killing steam into Saturday’s final, beating the fifth seeds, and now three-times runners-up at Wimbledon, Robert Lindstedt and Horia Tecau, in five thrilling sets.
“It’s why I play tennis, to win Wimbledon,” Marray said. “That’s what everyone dreamed of when I was growing up anyway. It’s the pinnacle of my career definitely.I’m just delighted to kind of be there and to get a chance to play on Centre Court and share it with Freddie. We’ve been friends for a long time. To do this together, it’s been great.”
“Obviously it’s a huge thing for me,” Nielsen said. “I was raised in a tennis fanatic house especially with my granddad and Wimbledon was always the thing. It was Wimbledon and everything else. I’ve been here many times as a kid and was able to suck in all the atmosphere. My biggest dream in tennis was just to be able to play on Centre Court. I have to admit that over the years I was thinking whether or not it was actually gonna happen because, yeah, I don’t get any younger.”
So welcome to the record books, Marray and Nielsen. Their first and only title together, Wimbledon 2012.