Surbiton Trophy 2023: Andy Murray Wins First Grass-Court Title In Seven Years

Murray beat Jurij Rodionov 6-3, 6-2 while Katie Swan lost a thrilling women's final
08:59, 12 Jun 2023

Andy Murray’s four young kids missed his first grass-court title for seven years due to a spectacular thunderstorm.

But the 36-year-old legend finally has a trophy to take home to Sophia, Edie, Teddy and Lola after beating Austria’s Jurij Rodionov 6-3, 6-2 in a match interrupted for almost three hours.

Murray’s wife Kim set off from their Surrey home with her husband a set to the good but then the heavens opened as they arrived – and the family headed home just as the covers came off.

The roars from the heavens eclipsed even anything three-time grand slam winner Murray produced on court in rare moments of frustration.

He was back on court at around 6.10pm leading 6-3, 3-1 and with triple break point at 40-0 on the Rodionov serve – and swiftly closed out the contest.

It was also Murray’s first title on home soil since that same year of 2016 – where he won the ATP Tour Finals at the O2 Arena in November.

And this success will send a message that he remains a real contender on grass ahead of Wimbledon next month.

Murray said: “The kids have always been asking me when I go away if I am going to come home with the trophy – and that has been rare these last few years.

“They actually came two minutes before the rain came – and then my wife had to take them back home and they missed the end of the match. But they were watching on the TV.

“So Sophia, Edie, Teddy, Lola, I hope you’re watching – and I am bringing home a trophy tonight.

“They didn’t tell me they were coming. And then after I won the first set my wife decided to bring them in case I managed to win.

“But they arrived as the storm did. And then left as they took the covers off. My wife messaged me saying ‘we literally just got home, I can’t believe we didn’t stay’.

“It’s great to win a tournament on home soil and on the grass. We don’t get a lot of chances on the grass, so these tournaments are not easy to win.

“And the journey getting back to this point has been tough, and I played some good tennis this week. If I serve like that, it gives me a chance against most players – so that is exciting.

“I kept working and kept believing. Winning matches and tournaments builds confidence and belief.

“It’s been the perfect start to the grass season. I chose to come here to get lots of matches under my belt so this week has been the perfect start.”

Rodionov said: “It was an honour to play Andy in the final. He beat me 6-2, 6-1 here last year – so there is some slight improvement.”

Meanwhile Katie Swan lost a thrilling final – missing her chance to take the British No1 spot and claim a first title on grass.

The 24-year-old from Bristol was a set up and then a break up in each of the next two sets before going down 6-2, 4-6, 6-7 [1-7] to Belgium’s Yanina Wickmayer.

And that means that Katie Boulter takes over from Emma Raducanu at the summit of British women’s tennis – despite semi-final defeat to the 33-year-old Wickmayer.

World No134 Swan said: “It was a tough physical match and very hot – and we pushed each other right to the very end. I wasn’t thinking too much about No1, I just want to improve my own ranking.

“There is a long season ahead and I have had a great week with many positives – I had a lot of confidence coming in after a good two weeks of training.

“And I will take this confidence in Nottingham next week. There are three more tournaments before Wimbledon so I’ll focus on those first, but it is an exciting time of the year.

“It was tough because as soon as I dropped my level slightly she was all over me. But congratulations to Yanina, it’s incredible what she is doing as a mum on tour.

“She is in unbelievable shape, I don’t know how you can look that good after having a baby.”

Former world No12 Wickmayer is on the charge up the rankings again after having her first child – daughter Luana – two years ago.

And she has been inspired by seeing the likes of Serena Williams, Tatjana Maria and Elina Svitolina come back to the tour after having children – seeing it is a “trend”.

Wickmayer, currently ranked 114, also reckons Swan’s game is good enough to propel her higher in the sport.

She said: “It has meant a lot coming back to tennis as a mum. It all has more meaning now, and I really feel like I know why I do it.

“It has been a big challenge coming back from scratch because I wasn’t sure I would, but it has been so worth it for the moments and the amazing emotions.

“It is a trend and if someone does it before you, then you know it is possible so there were role models. But it was a personal choice, I wanted to see if I missed tennis or not – but I felt the tennis chapter wasn’t fully written.

“Katie definitely has the level to be a top 100 player if she plays like this every week.”

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