Break­ing the ice: Scot­land’s ten­nis legacy is se­cured

The Courier & Advertiser (Angus and The Mearns Edition) - - SPORT - Eve Muir­head

The ten­nis legacy in Scot­land that the Mur­ray fam­ily have been fight­ing so hard for looks to have been se­cured. To have one of the two na­tional ten­nis acad­e­mies com­ing to Scot­land is bril­liant news.

This is no to­ken ges­ture.

I get to see close-up at Stir­ling Univer­sity the hard work that is put in by the young ten­nis play­ers in this coun­try and their coaches. They’re a ded­i­cated bunch and Colin Flem­ing is an im­pres­sive guy as head coach.

I’ve spo­ken to him a few times and his knowl­edge and con­tacts is just what you want at the top of the coach­ing pyra­mid. Stir­ling is a real sport­ing hub th­ese days.

We have our own curl­ing na­tional per­for­mance cen­tre a cou­ple of miles away from the uni and there is a multi-mil­lion-pound re­de­vel­op­ment of the sports cen­tre in the pipe­line.

The plans look amaz­ing and, as ath­letes, it has been nice to be asked what we would like to see in­cluded in the plans.

I think it’s two years away from be­ing com­pleted but I’m hop­ing I’ll still be on the scene to make good use of it!

Go­ing back to the ten­nis academy, the big­gest thing for young play­ers is that there will now be no rea­son for them to leave Scot­land to fol­low their dream.

Judy Mur­ray fa­mously re­gret­ted let­ting Jamie leave Dun­blane at 12 to go to a board­ing school at Cam­bridge which was near to an LTA train­ing cen­tre. Not only was he un­happy there, his ten­nis also suf­fered and Judy brought him back home.

I bet Judy will be thrilled that par­ents of bud­ding stars won’t have to make the hard de­ci­sion that she had to. A cou­ple of years ago it was start­ing to look a bit wor­ry­ing that the Mur­ray golden years would have noth­ing tan­gi­ble to show for it up here. Not any more.

“The big­gest thing for young play­ers is that there will now be no rea­son for them to leave Scot­land to fol­low their dream

Canada and foot­ball?

The peo­ple of Canada cer­tainly love their sport.

I’m sure the na­tion will em­brace be­ing a co-host for the 2026 foot­ball World Cup.

Mind you, I think they’ll have to spend the next eight years grow­ing the game over there.

They love their win­ter sports like ice hockey and curl­ing, and they are into their baseball and basketball. But I must ad­mit I’ve never got the im­pres­sion that it’s a foot­ball coun­try.

It will be in­ter­est­ing to see if that changes over the next few years.

Ruther­ford – sport­ing leg­end Of the Su­per Satur­day he­roes at the Lon­don Olympics, Greg Ruther­ford prob­a­bly got the least pub­lic­ity.

Maybe it didn’t turn out to be the life-changer he thought it might be but, now that he has an­nounced his re­tire­ment at the end of the sea­son, his place in Bri­tish sport­ing his­tory is se­cure.

In years to come peo­ple will look at his record of win­ning gold at Olympic, World, Euro­pean and Com­mon­wealth level and speak about him as one of the greats.

It’s a grand slam that very few have ac­com­plished and to be able to call your­self the most suc­cess­ful Bri­tish long jumper ever is pretty spe­cial.

You should try mea­sur­ing how far he jumped on your car­pet!

Getty.

Judy Mur­ray will be de­lighted to see one of the two na­tional ten­nis acad­e­mies head­ing to Scot­land.

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