Wim­ble­don statue hon­our for Sir Andy

Scottish Daily Mail - - News - By Liam Ross

HE told the world of his de­sire to make one fi­nal ap­pear­ance at Wim­ble­don in a last hur­rah to end his ca­reer.

But Sir Andy Mur­ray could soon be­come a per­ma­nent fix­ture at SW19 now plans have been an­nounced to im­mor­talise him in a statue.

The for­mer World Num­ber One broke down on Fri­day as he an­nounced his re­tire­ment due to an on­go­ing hip in­jury.

It came five years after the 31-year-old be­came the first British man to win at Wim­ble­don since Fred Perry in 1936.

Now the Scot could soon stand along­side his idol – cast in bronze.

The last statue to be erected to a British player was Vir­ginia Wade, who won the women’s sin­gles ti­tle in 1977. All Eng­land Club chief ex­ec­u­tive Richard Lewis an­nounced the plans on BBC Ra­dio 5 Live’s Sportsweek pro­gramme, say­ing the team is ‘very fond’ of Sir Andy.

He said: ‘We al­ways felt that when Andy re­tired, that would be the ap­pro­pri­ate time to recog­nise his ex­tra­or­di­nary ca­reer.

‘I am sure some­thing like that [a statue] will be done, but mean­while down at the club he is seen as a highly re­spected per­son both on and off the court.

‘We are very fond of him and he is a great per­son to have around the club.’ The fa­mous ground’s Perry sculp­ture, pic­tured, was cre­ated by artist David Wynne in 1984 to mark the 50th an­niver­sary of Perry’s first sin­gles Cham­pi­onship and stands at the north­east cor­ner of Cen­tre Court.

It is one of six such stat­ues and sits along­side head and shoul­der sculp­tures of the five British Ladies’ Sin­gles Cham­pi­ons Kitty God­free, Dorothy Round, An­gela Mor­timer, Ann Jones and Vir­ginia Wade, which were all cre­ated by artist Ian Rank-Broadley.

Sir Andy’s re­tire­ment an­nounce­ment sparked a wave of heart-felt trib­utes from sports stars, politi­cians, celebri­ties, fans and friends. It fol­lows a year of re­hab in which the twice-Wim­ble­don cham­pion bat­tled through health is­sues un­der­go­ing hip surgery to make a come­back. He said he hoped to keep play­ing in or­der to com­pete at Wim­ble­don but con­fessed he may ‘strug­gle to play through the pain’ over the next five months, mak­ing the Aus­tralian Open this week his fi­nal tour­na­ment.

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