Murray chokes back tears at Davis Cup after missing gran’s funeral to play match

Andy Murray says he has ‘a retirement date in mind’ ahead of Wimbledon

Andy Murray choked back tears after his Davis Cup victory over Leandro Riedi on Friday as he revealed how he had missed his grandmother Ellen’s funeral to play his singles match. “Today is a tough day for me,” Murray said in his on-court interview as he paused several times in order to compose himself after his win. “It’s actually my gran’s funeral. I’m sorry to my family that I’m not able to be there. Gran that one is for you.”

An emotional Murray had tears in his eyes as he apologised multiple times to the interviewer and the crowd for needing to take a moment away from the chat. But the crowd inside Manchester’s AO Arena rallied behind the Brit by cheering him loudly, and they also showed their support afterwards when the 36-year-old sat down on his bench and buried his head into a towel.

The moment came after Murray was asked by the BBC about ‘Grandma Pat’ in the crowd. The woman, a huge Murray fan, was watching her first ever live tennis match in the stands after celebrating her 90th birthday last week.

Asked if he might have a present he can gift the lady, three-time Grand Slam champion Murray said: “I’ve got a few sweaty t-shirts there! If she’d like one of them, I can sort that out no problem.” But he was then overcome with emotion as he discussed his grandmother’s passing.

He added in a press conference: “I spoke to my dad about it and he said ‘she’d want you to play’. He said ‘make sure you win’ – so I did.”

It came after Murray secured an impressive victory. After losing the opening set on a tie-break, the Scot came from behind to win the match 6-7 (7-9) 6-4 6-4 to give Great Britain a 1-0 lead over Switzerland. The 21-year-old Riedi certainly made Murray work for his win and the two-time Wimbledon champion humbly admitted as much in the immediate aftermath.

“Obviously incredible to get through that one, easily could’ve gone the other way,” said Murray. “He was returning… I mean it was ridiculous the shots he was pulling off. Amazing, amazing returning.

“He made it very tough for me but I just kept fighting and tried to stay focused and managed to turn it around. It’s difficult because we were expecting [Dominic] Stricker to play, who is a left-hander and I’ve been practising and preparing for that.

“Then you find out an hour before the match that it was changed [to Riedi] and I’m not really prepared. I’d never played him before or practiced with him before. I knew he was a shot maker but he sustained it for a really long time today and yeah I had to make some adjustments during the match.

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“The team obviously help a lot with that as well so thanks to them for helping me get through.” British No 1 Cameron Norrie takes on former world No 3 Stan Wawrinka in the second of three matches.

Great Britain got off to a winning start in the group stages on Wednesday as they beat Australia 2-1. Jack Draper and Dan Evans won their singles matches against Thanasi Kokkinakis and Alex de Minaur before Evans fell to defeat in the doubles tie.

Murray and Norrie were then selected by captain Leon Smith to play against Switzerland on Friday afternoon. Murray earned a win but Norrie was beaten by Wawrinka 7-5, 6-4.

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