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Murray soaks it in as Wimbledon welcomes him back

Published June 23, 2014 10:43 pm

Tennis • Adoring crowd watches defending champ, countryman sweep first-round match.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

London • It had been, famously, more than 75 years since a British man arrived at Wimbledon as the defending champion.

So Andy Murray took a moment — and, really, only a moment — to take in the sights and sounds Monday at Centre Court as nearly 15,000 spectators, including Shaquille O'Neal up in the Royal Box, rose to greet him with a raucous standing ovation.

Murray's parents and grandparents were present. So, of course, was his much-discussed recent choice as coach, Amelie Mauresmo. The other player, 105th-ranked David Goffin of Belgium, was little more than a bystander for all of the proceedings, which wrapped up a little more than two hours after they began with a 6-1, 6-4, 7-5 victory for Murray.

"I was pretty nervous and stuff before the match. Then when you're walking to the court — I have a lot of memories obviously from last year. To come to the court and get that reception, it was very nice," said Murray, who last year became the first man from Britain since Fred Perry in 1936 to win the nation's prestigious tennis tournament.

That title for Perry was his third in a row at the All England Club, but he did not try for another one in 1937.

Murray heeded advice from Mauresmo, the 2006 women's champion at Wimbledon, who told him to soak in everything while walking out to play because, as he put it, "You never know if you'll get the chance to do it again."

He responded to the crowd's reaction with a quick wave and a glance around the arena.

"Enjoyed it for the walk to the chair," Murray said. "Then when I sat down, it was time to get on with business."

Certainly took care of that. He was crisp and clean, finishing with only 10 unforced errors and saving the only two break points he faced. He pounded serves at up to 131 mph and returned Goffin's not-quite-as-fast offerings with ease.

All the while, the fans roared for his winners and groaned as a group when their man lost points, no matter how or what significance. They gasped when Murray's leg buckled a bit and he slipped to the fresh turf in the third game. He rose to his feet quickly and won that point, part of racing to a 3-0 lead.

"I always say the buildup to the tournament is the hardest part. Once the tournament starts, it's fine," said the third-seeded Murray. first round, Men's singles

Tomas Berdych (6), Czech Republic, def. Victor Hanescu, Romania, 6-7 (5), 6-1, 6-4, 6-3. Marinko Matosevic, Australia, def. Fernando Verdasco (18), Spain, 6-4, 4-6, 6-4, 6-2. Gilles Simon, France, def. Konstantin Kravchuk, Russia, 6-2, 7-6 (4), 7-5. Blaz Rola, Slovenia, def. Pablo Andujar, Spain, 6-3, 6-1, 6-4. Sergiy Stakhovsky, Ukraine, def. Carlos Berlocq, Argentina, 6-3, 6-3, 6-3. Ernests Gulbis (12), Latvia, def. Jurgen Zopp, Estonia, 7-6 (7), 7-5, 7-6 (10). Mikhail Youzhny (17), Russia, def. James Ward, Britain, 6-2, 6-2, 6-1. Jimmy Wang, Taiwan, def. Alejandro Gonzalez, Colombia, 6-3, 6-3, 6-2. Andy Murray (3), Britain, def. David Goffin, Belgium, 6-1, 6-4, 7-5. Edouard Roger-Vasselin, France, def. Filippo Volandri, Italy, 7-6 (1), 6-2, 6-4. Jeremy Chardy, France, def. Daniel Cox, Britain, 6-2, 7-6 (3), 6-7 (6), 6-3. Bernard Tomic, Australia, def. Evgeny Donskoy, Russia, 6-4, 6-3, 6-2. Kevin Anderson (20), South Africa, def. Aljaz Bedene, Slovenia, 6-3, 7-5, 6-2. Leonardo Mayer, Argentina, def. Andreas Seppi (25), Italy, 6-3, 2-6, 4-6, 7-6 (5), 6-4. Marcos Baghdatis, Cyprus, def. Dustin Brown, Germany, 6-4, 7-5, 2-6, 7-6 (4). Grigor Dimitrov (11), Bulgaria, def. Ryan Harrison, United States, 7-6 (1), 6-3, 6-2. Robin Haase, Netherlands, def. Vasek Pospisil (31), Canada, 7-6 (6), 4-6, 7-5, 6-3. David Ferrer (7), Spain, def. Pablo Carreno Busta, Spain, 6-0, 6-7 (3), 6-1, 6-1. Roberto Bautista Agut (27), Spain, def. Steve Johnson, United States, 6-3, 6-7 (3), 6-4, 7-5. Tim Puetz, Germany, def. Teymuraz Gabashvili, Russia, 2-6, 6-4, 6-2, 6-2. Radek Stepanek, Czech Republic, def. Pablo Cuevas, Uruguay, 6-2, 6-4, 6-4. Luke Saville, Australia, def. Dominic Thiem, Austria, 7-5, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4. Andreas Haider-Maurer, Austria, def. Kyle Edmund, Britain, 6-3, 7-6 (4), 6-2. Novak Djokovic (1), Serbia, def. Andrey Golubev, Kazakhstan, 6-0, 6-1, 6-4. Marin Cilic (26), Croatia, def. Paul-Henri Mathieu, France, 6-4, 6-7 (2), 6-2, 6-1. Jan Hernych, Czech Republic, def. Tobias Kamke, Germany, 6-3, 6-7 (5), 6-3, 5-7, 6-4. Alexandr Dolgopolov (21), Ukraine, def. Samuel Groth, Australia, 7-5, 7-6 (2), 7-6 (5). Andrey Kuznetsov, Russia, def. Daniel Evans, Britain, 6-1, 7-5, 3-6, 7-6 (5). Fabio Fognini (16), Italy, def. Alex Kuznetsov, United States, 2-6, 1-6, 6-4, 6-1, 9-7. Benjamin Becker, Germany, def. Donald Young, United States, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (14), France, leads Jurgen Melzer, Austria, 6-1, 3-6, 3-6, 6-2, 5-4, susp., rain. Sam Querrey, United States, leads Bradley Klahn, United States, 6-7 (5), 6-4, 6-1, 6-5, susp., rain.

first round, Women's singles

Yanina Wickmayer, Belgium, def. Sam Stosur (17), Australia, 6-3, 6-4. Peng Shuai, China, def. Johanna Konta, Britain, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4. Maria Kirilenko, Russia, def. Sloane Stephens (18), United States, 6-2, 7-6 (6). Ekaterina Makarova (22), Russia, def. Kimiko Date-Krumm, Japan, 3-6, 6-4, 7-5. Elena Vesnina (32), Russia, def. Patricia Mayr-Achleitner, Austria, 6-0, 6-4. Ana Konjuh, Croatia, def. Marina Erakovic, New Zealand, 6-3, 4-6, 6-0. Polona Hercog, Slovenia, def. Paula Ormaechea, Argentina, 6-4, 6-4. Barbora Zahlavova Strycova, Czech Republic, def. Alla Kudryavtseva, Russia, 6-2, 6-2. Misaki Doi, Japan, def. Elina Svitolina, Ukraine, 6-4, 6-1. Victoria Azarenka (8), Belarus, def. Mirjana Lucic-Baroni, Croatia, 6-3, 7-5. Yvonne Meusburger, Austria, def. Vania King, United States, 7-5, 6-3. Lauren Davis, United States, def. Alisa Kleybanova, Russia, 6-1, 6-2. Bojana Jovanovski, Serbia, def. Johanna Larsson, Sweden, 7-6 (2), 6-0. Lucie Safarova (23), Czech Republic, def. Julia Goerges, Germany, 7-6 (3), 7-6 (3). Kurumi Nara, Japan, def. Anna-Lena Friedsam, Germany, 6-4, 6-4. Li Na (2), China, def. Paula Kania, Poland, 7-5, 6-2. Venus Williams (30), United States, def. Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor, Spain, 6-4, 4-6, 6-2. Mona Barthel, Germany, def. Romina Oprandi, Switzerland, 7-5, 6-0. Naomi Broady, Britain, def. Timea Babos, Hungary, 2-6, 7-6 (7), 6-0. Flavia Pennetta (12), Italy, def. Jana Cepelova, Slovakia, 6-2, 6-3. Jarmila Gajdosova, Australia, def. Stefanie Voegele, Switzerland, 6-3, 7-6 (6). Tereza Smitkova, Czech Republic, def. Hsieh Su-wei, Taiwan, 6-3, 6-3. Alison Van Uytvanck, Belgium, def. Monica Niculescu, Romania, 6-4, 6-3. Petra Kvitova (6), Czech Republic, def. Andrea Hlavackova, Czech Republic, 6-3, 6-0. Casey Dellacqua, Australia, def. Anett Kontaveit, Estonia, 3-6, 7-6 (4), 6-3. CoCo Vandeweghe, United States, def. Garbine Muguruza (27), Spain, 6-3, 3-6, 7-5. Dominika Cibulkova (10), Slovakia, def. Aleksandra Wozniak, Canada, 6-1, 6-2. Caroline Wozniacki (16), Denmark, leads Shahar Peer, Israel, 6-3, 2-0 (30-30), susp., rain. Sara Errani (14), Italy, vs. Caroline Garcia, France, 6-2, 6-7 (3), susp., rain. Tsvetana Pironkova, Bulgaria, leads Varvara Lepchenko, United States, 7-6 (6), 0-2, susp., rain. Agnieszka Radwanska (4), Poland, leads Andreea Mitu, Romania, 4-2, susp., rain. Michelle Larcher de Brito, Portugal, leads Svetlana Kuznetsova (28), Russia, 2-1 (15-30), susp., rain. —

Wimbledon

P Tuesday

TV • 5 a.m., ESPN; 9:30 a.m., ESPNews; noon, ESPN2

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