Wimbledon 2021: Andy Murray says 'not many players would have won that match'

Right after a match, Andy Murray can be many things. Funny, considered, quick to correct, his own man and, maybes aye, as playfully contrary as Kenny Dalglish. But boastful? Not really.

Nevertheless, he couldn't resist a toot on his own trumpet after it seemed the long-awaited Centre Court comeback was unravelling with the Scot losing seven games in a row.

“That’s never happened to me before in my career, being two sets to love up, three breaks up,” said Murray, who from 5-0 ahead proceeded to lose the third to Georgia’s Nikoloz Basilahsvili.

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The two-times champion stopped the rot, though, and the 6-4, 6-4, 5-7, 6-3 victory prompted the claim: “I don't think there are that many players that would have won that fourth set.”

Andy Murray rolled back the years with a rollercoaster win and was justly proud of it
Andy Murray rolled back the years with a rollercoaster win and was justly proud of it

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Wimbledon 2021: Andy Murray wins a classic rollercoaster to advance to second ro...

He was right.

Maybe the old Murray would have done. But here was the new Murray – the one with the metal hip – turning back the clock to the days when he regularly revved up the Wimbledon rollercoaster, thrilling the crowd at the same time as frazzling nerves, his own included.

“When you haven't played any matches, yeah, things can get away from you a little bit quick,” he said.

"At the end of that third set, I was starting to feel a little bit of fatigue and then I was questioning ‘well, if I end up losing this set, will I be OK?’

“There was pressure on me all through. I dealt with that really well until the end of the third set when I didn't.”

He repeated his remark about few being capable of turning the match around.

“Having just lost seven games in a row from 5-0 up, a lot of players would have capitulated there, and I did the opposite of that,” he said.

Murray imagined what the headlines could have been – he’d “choked” and this had been “one of the worst defeats of his career”.

“That’s what I would have heard if I’d lost,” he said. “Not easy to turn that around.”

Murray’s bullish mood might have been prompted by the constant line of questioning, which suggests career obituaries are being prepared.

“I keep being asked if this is my last Wimbledon or last match. No, I want to play,” he’d told the crowd as it caught its breath after three hours and 32 minutes of hectic action.

And the fans – restricted to half the Centre Court, but sounding like a full house – drew praise from their favourite.

“They were great, very loud and really into it,” he said.

"I think people are just desperate to be out watching sports or whatever. They just want to go out and have a good time. And I think that after the last 18 months everyone, and me included, has realised these moments – the things we love doing – should not be taken for granted.”

How were the bones, the real ones and the metal substitute going to recover?

“I have to wait and see because like in New York I actually did pretty well in the first round, felt fine that evening, and then I woke up the next day and could barely walk,” he said.

My groin was really painful and I didn't recover from that match at all. I’ll be trying to prioritise sleep.”

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