Judy Murray’s fear of being cast as ‘pushy’ stopped 2013 embrace
Judy Murray has revealed how years of critical comments prevented her from stepping forward to congratulate her son Andy when he won his first Wimbledon title in 2013.
After overcoming Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray climbed up towards the player box to embrace his wife and members of his team. But he did not see his mum, who was sitting a few rows back, and turned back only after fans shouted.
Judy Murray was Great Britain’s Fed Cup captain at the time, so her expertise as a coach was not in doubt. But her gender led to her being stereotyped as a “Tiger mum” when a father would have been accepted more readily. During an interview with
Whitaker, which is recorded in partnership with
Judy Murray said: “I moved out of the box, I had been so uncomfortable during the semi-final with people clapping for somebody else.
“Then he wins and starts to climb up to celebrate with everybody, and because I had moved back, he doesn’t see me in the player box. He doesn’t know where I am.
“The reason I didn’t [step forward] was because of the years of being criticised for being a pushy mum, overbearing – all of this that I had to put up with from the media for years. I thought I can’t go down there, because I’ll just get it again.”
One of the most prominent voices of criticism had been Boris
Becker, who had said after Andy Murray’s loss to Novak Djokovic in the 2011 Australian Open final that he should “ditch” his mother. In a recent BBC interview, Judy Murray revealed that she had not gone out for three days after that comment, and had never been able to forgive Becker.
Judy Murray said: “I became more confident to speak out after
Andy won. [The people who criticised] didn’t know me, didn’t know the journey we had been on, don’t understand how much in an individual sport the parent has to make everything happen for the child.”
Meanwhile, the Progress Tour Women’s Championships begin at the National Tennis Centre in Roehampton today.
The format is similar to that of last month’s all-male Schroders Battle of the Brits, only on a larger scale, with four groups of four singles players and two groups of four doubles partnerships.
The late withdrawal yesterday of Heather Watson (foot) and Harriet Dart (groin) leaves Katie Boulter as the tournament favourite.
Crowning moment: Judy Murray holds the Wimbledon trophy alongside her son Andy after he overcame Novak Djokovic in 2013