British tennis 'not good enough', must build on Emma Raducanu's success: Andy Murray

This isn't the first time he's chastised the British tennis system for failing to prioritise the grassroots development of tennis players.

Andy Murray in a file photo. (Image: Twitter)

Andy Murray, the British tennis star, has urged his government to build on the success of Emma Raducanu, a teenage US Open champion. He stated that more investment in the sport at the grassroots level was required, and that the state of British tennis was deplorable. Raducanu was the first British woman in 44 years to win a major singles title, as well as the first qualifier in women’s tennis. She won the tournament without dropping a set, defeating another teenager, Leylah Fernandez, in the final 6-4 6-3. Earlier, Murray had ended a 76-year drought in British tennis by winning the US Open in 2012. This isn’t the first time he’s chastised the British tennis system for failing to prioritise the grassroots development of tennis players.

‘NOT GOOD ENOUGH’

“On the men’s side, it was 77 years’ wait for someone to win a grand slam and women’s, it’s been 44 years, and for a country that hosts the biggest tennis tournament in the world and is certainly not lacking in money, that’s not really good enough,” Murray told the media ahead of his clash with Ugo Humbert at the Moselle Open in Metz.

“One of the images that tennis has had over the years has just been that it’s not accessible enough, I think. If your image is that—that it’s a rich person’s sport and it’s too expensive to play—I’m sure that that potentially puts people off, maybe parents as well getting their kids into it,” the 34-year-old added.

When asked if he had any advice for the youngster, Murray said he would not impose his views on her. “I never really liked it when ex-British tennis players were always wading in after every win and loss about what you should be doing, what you shouldn’t be doing, and a lot of them also giving advice when you haven’t asked for it. I found it incredibly irritating. I don’t want to be that person,” Murray said.

“If she ever wants to talk, or her family, obviously I would always be there on the end of the phone,” he concluded.

EARLIER COMMENTS

“I think for a lot of the people involved in British tennis, we knew she was extremely good. She hadn’t competed much for the last sort of 18 months or so with school and coronavirus and those sorts of things, but I think at Wimbledon everyone sort of got a bit of a glimpse of how good she could be,” Murray had said earlier about the young US Open champion.

“I’ve spent a little bit of time around her on the practice court, but more so in the same building, training close to each other, and watching what she’s doing, and she’s obviously really, really good. But what she did in New York was very special, a huge boost for British tennis and gives, hopefully, the governing bodies an opportunity to capitalise on that and get more and more kids involved in the sport. It’s great what she did and a huge opportunity for British tennis now,” he had added.




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Sportslumo Desk

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