With 74 years of pain ended by being the first British player to qualify for a Wimbledon final since Bunny Austin in 1938, Andy Murray just has two more years to go to end the 76 year wait since Fred Perry won the event.
He has a tough task to overcome the six-time champion Roger Federer. Particularly knowing how badly he tanked the last two times he met the Swiss in a big one.
I’ll be here throughout the game talking tennis, making general observances and hopefully mentioning not the weather.
Will it be fourth time lucky for Murray in his Grand Slam quest? We’ll find out over the next few hours. Go Andy?
Roger Federer wins 5-7 6-4 6-3 6-3
Game, Set, Match and Championship: Roger Federer wins as Murray’s cross court shot goes long. A 7th Wimbledon title for one of the game’s greatest. Another losing Grand Slam final for Murray. He had two good sets but he simply lacked the belief when Federer took him in to deeper waters. The crowd only really started to support Murray once the cause was lost.
For all the talk about Federer’s genius he was there to be beaten today but Andy Murray failed to take the opportunities he was presented, something Federer did less and less of as the game progressed.
I hate to say it but Andy Murray didn’t have the bottle to be a champion today.
18.10: Murray holds but he’s leaving it to the very last if he’s to save this match and this championship. At last the crowd is doing some cheering. Fed leads 5-4 and serves for the title.
18.03: Murray managed to get a little bit of pressure on Federer’s serve but he continues to fail on the crucial points. Fed leads 5-3. Murray to serve to stay in the game.
18.00: Murray digs in to hold his serve. He has to step up now and get that break back. Perhaps some finishing line nerves will hit Federer. Fed leads 4-3.
17.57: Murray had chances against Federer’s serve put again puts a ball long when he should be winning a crucial point. Fed holds to lead 4-2.
17.52: Andy Murray is starting to look a beaten man as he limply gives up a service game. Federer is blooming and Andy is wilting badly. Fed breaks to lead 3-2 in what may well be the final set. If Murray wants to be a Grand Slam champion he needs to dig deep and start playing like one.
17.48: Federer beautifully faked a drop shot before pushing it long to win an early point. That seemed to drain Murray and Fed wins the game to love when Murray sends another shot long. 2-2
17.45: Murray holds his serve but that’s what it feels like he’s doing right now, holding on. Mur 2-1.
To win the 4th set: Federer 4/11, Murray 2/1 – Bet Now
17.41: Murray had a sniff of a break but he’s just pushing his shots a little wide or a little long at crucial moments. Fed holds. 1-1
17.36: Murray holds in the first game of the fourth set. He still looks a shadow of the player he was in the first set. The fans have been a bit useless as far as giving him a boost goes. It wouldn’t be like this for Henman.
17.30: Federer closes out the third set and the signs don’t look good for Murray at the moment. Ever since losing the last game of the second set, Murray has looked like he did in his previous Grand Slam appearances. Which is bad news for those of us who backed the Scot to win. Federer leads two sets to one.
17.26: Murray holds to keep the third set alive. Can he get near Federer’s serve in the next game? Fed leads 5-3
17.22: Federer’s game went by a lot quicker. He holds easily to lead 5-2. Andy’s shots are going too high over the net. He doesn’t look like he believes in himself right now.
17.20: A tough, tough game in which Andy went from 40-0 up to having to save six break points. He couldn’t save the seventh. That knackered me out just watching. Murray is starting to look like he might be crumbling a little. Fed leads 4-2.
16.58: Federer holds to love a little too easily. Murray needs to start pressurizing his serve again. I get the feeling that whoever wins this set wins the championship. Damn, was that a cliche?
16.56: Murray holds to 15. The sound of the rain hammering down on the Centre Court roof is making me wish I hadn’t downed that massive cappuccino during the break in play. 2-2.
16.52: Federer has to wait as David Cameron scrambles to his seat. Fed wins the first point to close out his service game. He leads 2-1 in the third set.
16.48: The roof is closed and the players are back out on court warming up. The intensified indoor atmosphere could help Murray if he can get the crowd on his side.
Match Prices: Federer 2/5, Murray 15/8 – Bet Now
16.23: The roof is being closed so we have a short wait until the game is back on. Boris Becker explains how things like the wind and the sun aren’t as big a factor indoors. Really Boris?
16.13: The rain comes pouring down and I mean pouring. Will we wait and see or is the roof coming in to action? Probably not the worst time for Murray to go off and refocus a little as Federer was starting to look dangerous. Federer was leading 40-0 in the third game of the third set when play was stopped.
16.10: Murray is put under some pressure but he digs in, plays some quality shots and holds. 1-1
16.06: Federer holds to go 1-0 up in the third set. The sky is darkening above. Will the roof be getting rolled out?
Match Prices: Federer 4/9, Murray 7/4 – Bet Now
16.02: Some beautiful play from both players but Federer shows why he’s a six-times champ in that game, coming back from 30-0 down to break and level the match. Fed needed that.
15.56: Another hold of serve but again Federer is made to work hard for it. Murray is making him play a lot more shots than he would like. Fed leads 6-5
15.51: A lovely soft-handed drop shot at the net and Murray holds to love. 5-5
15.48: Some great play from Murray and some more unforced errors from Federer made that an uncomfortable game for the third seed. He holds though and leads 5-4 in the second set.
15.41: Another comfortable hold of serve from Murray. 4-4.
To win 2nd set: Federer 4/11, Murray 15/8 – Bet Now
15.37: And Federer holds to serve as they race through a couple of games Fed leads 4-3.
15.35: Murray holds to love in a game in which he hit his fifth ace of the game to Federer’s three. 3-3.
15.32: Federer saves two break points to hold serve. Murray is starting to really sniff around his serve and he needs to keep the foot on the pedal. fed leads 3-2.
15.26: A much easier hold of serve that time for Murray. He’s looking comfortable out there, even when things get uncomfortable. If that makes sense. 2-2.
Match Prices: Federer 8/11, Murray 11/10 – Bet Now
15.23: Federer holds to go 2-1 up in the second set.
15.20: Another long service game in which Murray has to fight to hold serve. Hold he does though. 1-1.
15.18: Boris Becker clearly has a mancrush on John McEnroe. It’s not that nice a tie Boris.
15.11: Andy may have just pissed Roger off as he comes out an wins the first game of the second set to love. Fed leads 1-0 in the 2nd set.
15.08: There you have it. Andy Murray holds convincingly to win his first ever Grand Slam final set at the tenth time of asking. Tenth time trying to win a set, no a Grand Slam. Murray wins the first set 6-4.
15.02: Well what do you know? After coming close to being broken in the previous game, Murray breaks to 15. Can he hold now to win his first ever Grand Slam final set? Murray leads 5-4.
14.59: A long, long game but Murray battles through three breakpoints to hold his serve. A vital hold too. 4-4
14.45: Federer holds to 15 as he begins to look in control of things out there. The odd shout of ‘Come on Murray!’ might help a little. Fed leads 4-3.
14.43: Murray holds after being taken to deuce but he’s not looking his most confident out there. Poor effort from the crowd so far. 3-3
14.37: Federer fights back from 0-30 to hold his serve and though he made a few more unforced errors he’s ominously starting to play his way right in to this game. Murray needs to react positively. Fed leads 3-2.
14.30: And Federer breaks right back. Murray’s serves kept coming back at him there as he looked a little ragged. Pity. 2-2
14.21: Federer holds but Murray takes him to deuce. You’d think the Scot had 16 Grand Slams in his locker the way this game has started. Murray leads 2-1.
14.18: A touch nervy from Murray in his first service game but he’s started the stronger and holds to 30 to lead 2-0.
14.13: A nervy start from Federer who puts a simple enough volley long on break point. Murray breaks to lead 1-0.
14.10: Here we go then. It’s time to whip out the Murray Braveheart pic.
14.03: Andy looking a tad nervous as the players warm up but is it good nervous or bad nervous?
14.00: The Middleton sisters are picked out applauding the players on to the court. They always go to the hot tottie, those scoundrel cameramen.
13.58: Murray has to follow Federer down several miles of corridors before the players get out to the court. I hope he’s not imagining Fed naked to calm the nerves.
13.56: Andy Murray could do with a pair of Paddy Power lucky pants today. Good thing we sent him a pair.
13.52: We start our day with Beckham pondering how he’d feel if he was about to play on Centre Court. I’m not sure Becks would fancy running around the court for four hours, not these days. He’s even brought up the Olympics without crying….just. Well done sir.