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Wimbledon 2010: Andy Murray column

Andy Murray

Highlights - Masterful Murray's royal performance

By Andy Murray
World number four and British number one

The Queen's visit to Wimbledon was not just a great occasion for me - all of the players loved it.

Players are usually so picky with their time at Grand Slams but everybody really wanted to meet the Queen and be around the event because it was a once in a lifetime opportunity and a real honour.

It certainly made the build-up to my match a little bit different, there were a few more things to focus on and arrange beforehand, but once you get out there you have to put all that stuff to the back of your mind and try to get on with it.

In terms of the etiquette of the day, I spoke with some of the tournament officials who took me out onto Centre Court and told me to bow when I went out, and bow when I came back, and that after the match we would both go to meet the Queen.

It's just amazing what Isner and Mahut did and it's a really, really good thing for tennis

Jarkko and I are in different locker rooms though, so the two of us spoke just before we went out onto court. In the past, the players used to have their bags taken out for them, but that didn't happen this time so we wanted to make sure we both knew what we were going to do.

As for the bow, I must admit, I was pretty nervous and I made sure I practised a few times in the mirror the night before. I also discussed with Jarkko what we should do.

It just seemed a bit more natural if we dropped the bags because if you have your bag on your back you can't do a proper bow, and we agreed that it looks a little bit stiff if you don't do anything with your hands.

Anyway, I've got relatively good reviews considering it was the first time I've done it, although Tim Henman was giving me grief in the BBC studios afterwards.

Once the match started I played well, even though it was a really tough start facing four break points in the first game. I spoke to Jarkko after the match and said that although I went 3-0 up, it could almost have been the other way around.

He doesn't give you many free points but I served very well, which is good for the rest of the tournament.

Afterwards, I managed to catch Isner's match point against Mahut - it was just an incredible effort from both guys.

Andy Murray and Jarkko Nieminen bow for the Queen on Centre Court

Murray's royal bow raises a cheer

Isner was always in a better position as he was serving first and Mahut had to serve to stay in it over 60 times.

It's just amazing what they both did and it's a really, really good thing for tennis. It's been everywhere for the last couple of days and even in the States it's been on all the talk shows, so it's great.

My focus is now on Gilles Simon in the third round and he's a really good player. He was in the top 10 for quite a while and has had a knee problem this year, but he's beaten Federer and Nadal and had a lot of tough matches with Djokovic. He's a really tough guy to beat.

After the past couple of days, there might not be quite as much attention on Wimbledon when we play on Saturday, but I don't really mind either way - it's something you just deal with once you get on the court.

You have to put all those other things to the back of your mind and not focus on them, and I did a good job of that on Thursday.

This Wimbledon has definitely been different though. I don't think a match like Isner and Mahut will ever happen again in my lifetime, and the Queen might not come to Wimbledon again during my career, although I hope she does.

It's been a couple of days when these things might never be matched, so it's great for tennis.

Andy Murray was talking to Piers Newbery and will be contributing regular columns to BBC Scotland throughout Wimbledon 2010.

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see also
Murray hits top form at Wimbledon
24 Jun 10 |  Tennis
Murray eases through at Wimbledon
22 Jun 10 |  Tennis
Andy Murray column
22 Jun 10 |  Tennis
Andy Murray column
20 Jun 10 |  Scotland
Tennis on the BBC
26 Oct 11 |  Tennis

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