Judy Murray has tipped Ivan Lendl to restore the “poker face” that can guide Andy Murray to another Wimbledon title.
Former Fed Cup coach Judy Murray hailed son Andy’s reunion with coach Lendl, backing the move as a boost for the world number two’s bid to maintain steely focus under intense match pressure.
Judy Murray praised the 2013 Wimbledon champion’s typical strength of character in opting for a second coaching stint under eight-time grand slam winner Lendl’s tutelage.
“There is a huge amount of reassurance and confidence that comes from having somebody in your corner who has actually been through the winning and losing of slams themselves,” Judy Murray told Press Association Sport.
“They know what it feels like, they know what you’re going through every day; they know the demands that are going to be on you.
“One of the big things Ivan helped Andy with when they worked together the last time was the ability to set his focus when he got distracted, whether he was frustrated by a bad call or something like that, when you have to just forget it and move on.
“I think he helped him a lot with that the last time, and when you get into the critical moments there are so many good players in the men’s game that you can’t afford to have momentary lapses in concentration.
“In his career Lendl was remembered as much as anything for the poker face, the relentlessness, just that focus that he was on a mission and nothing would distract him from that mission.
“So it’s good to have him back.”
Judy Murray insisted son Andy would have had no qualms reuniting with Lendl, despite long-held theories about partnerships never working as strongly the second time around.
“I think if Andy had taken any notice of all the people who expressed opinions about him and his tennis, he would have given up long ago,” said Judy Murray, speaking to champion HSBC’s Road to Wimbledon tennis tournament.
“You have to go with what your gut is telling you that you need.
“Andy has always been very good at knowing when he needs to change something. He’s a real student of the game, and obviously of his own game.”
While Andy Murray will eye singles glory at SW19 brother Jamie will target the doubles crown, but mum Judy knows neither will forget their roots.
Judy Murray has helped oversee HSBC’s Road to Wimbledon junior tournament in recent weeks, where under-14s can win through to a finals competition at the hallowed All England Club.
This Saturday she will be back in hometown Dunblane at the home tennis club, running Andy’s Mini Murrays Day, a team competition for eight to 10 year olds where the winners will receive tickets to Andy Murray’s charity exhibition match in Glasgow in September.
Judy Murray will also run a similar event for doubles maestro Jamie, who will pair up with Andy to take on Gael Monfils and Tim Henman in the Andy Murray Live event in Glasgow on September 21.
Walking back into Dunblane Tennis Club and seeing pictures of Andy and Jamie on the walls as juniors, Judy Murray admitted she still pinches herself at their success - then reaffirmed her commitment to capitalising on their legacy.
Judy Murray’s Tennis on the Road programme has taken the sport to more than 10,500 people in remote and disadvantaged areas across Scotland in the last two years.
“I could perhaps say the same about all the things I had to learn,” said Judy Murray, of her first forays as a national coach in Scotland.
“If I had listened to all the people who said ‘don’t be silly, we don’t do tennis in Scotland, no you can’t have any more funding for your programme’, if I had listened to all the people who had told me I was wasting my time, then we wouldn’t have Wimbledon champions or have won the Davis Cup.
“So I always went with my gut as well, so I think you just pass that onto your kids.
“You definitely pinch yourself from time to time: the main times it hits me are actually when I’m back in Dunblane at the tennis club, because you go into the clubhouse, you see the pictures on the wall of them in amongst loads of other little children, from their younger days.
“And you remember that they were just two little boys from this club who used to run around with water bombs, footballs, and used to play swing-ball in the car park.
“Who would ever have imagined they would end up where they have.
“It’s why I still try to run things at the club from time to time.
“We can show the kids those pictures as well, show them where Jamie and Andy started, and say ‘anything’s possible’.”
• Judy Murray is an HSBC ambassador. HSBC is the official banking partner of the Wimbledon championships and is committed to supporting tennis from the back garden to Centre Court. Follow @HSBC_Sport
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