We must savour life’s big mo­ments

The Sunday Post (Newcastle) - - NEWS - judy mur­ray FOL­LOW ME ON TWIT­TER @JUDY­MUR­RAY

It's been quite a week af­ter watch­ing Jamie suc­cess­fully de­fend his US Open mixed dou­bles ti­tle in New York. You only get mixed dou­bles in the four Grand Slams, and Jamie’s had a lot of suc­cess in it – that was his third US Open mixed fi­nal. The most im­por­tant rule is to keep your part­ner happy, and he does a re­ally good job of that be­cause he’s al­ways smil­ing and en­cour­ag­ing. I went out for the first week of the event and, as much as I love New York, a week of the hus­tle, bus­tle and hu­mid­ity was long enough. But when Jamie won the semi-fi­nal with part­ner Bethanie Mat­tek-Sands, I made the de­ci­sion to go back over. Af­ter all, th­ese are such big and spe­cial mo­ments in your kids’ lives and you just never know whether there’s go­ing to be another one. This was Jamie’s sixth Grand Slam ti­tle which is an in­cred­i­ble achieve­ment by any­one’s stan­dards, and he doesn’t re­ally get the at­ten­tion or the credit per­haps that he ought to for the level he’s com­pet­ing at. Sadly, dou­bles has rel­a­tively lit­tle me­dia ex­po­sure. There are lots of ups and downs in ten­nis. When you win a tour­na­ment every­thing be­comes about you. If you’re the run­ner up – and the boys have been run­ners up on many oc­ca­sions – it’s a very, very lonely place to be. You go back to a de­serted locker room, pack up, do your me­dia and find your way to the air­port. Af­ter Jamie’s win, he show­ered, grabbed some food and went to the oblig­a­tory press con­fer­ence with Bethanie. I went to lis­ten with Jamie’s wife and, at the end they al­low the cham­pi­ons to recog­nise the con­tri­bu­tion of their coaches and award them their own tro­phy. It’s a lovely thing and the US Open is the only Grand Slam to do that. Of­ten in th­ese sit­u­a­tions play­ers are go­ing on to another tour­na­ment so they ship out quickly and there is no time to cel­e­brate. I wish we had more time to recog­nise th­ese mo­ments, cel­e­brate as a fam­ily and ap­pre­ci­ate what’s been achieved, but you don’t al­ways get the chance. The women’s fi­nal fol­lowed which was marred by the con­tro­versy over Ser­ena’s dis­pute with the um­pire. I’ve turned in­ter­view re­quests down about this be­cause it’s such a po­lar­is­ing is­sue. The sad thing is it over­shad­owed Naomi Osaka’s fab­u­lous win and that’s a real shame.

Jamie and his part­ner Bethanie Mat­tek-Sands

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