Andy Murray, a British professional tennis player currently ranked number one in men’s singles, has recently won praise for an important point he made regarding records broken in tennis.
Murray attended a post-match news conference after losing a match to American player Sam Querrey in the quarterfinals at the All England Club. A journalist started his question to Murray by saying, “Sam is the first U.S. player to reach a major semifinal since 2009, how would you describe—“
This was when Murray interjected to correct the journalist’s comment: “Male player.”
“I beg your pardon?” the journalist asked.
“Male player,” repeated the athlete.
“Yes, first male player, that’s for sure,” the journalist agreed before finishing his question.
Sam Querrey is in fact the first American man to make it to the semi-finals at a Grand Slam tournament since Andy Roddick reached the Wimbledon final in 2009. However, fellow U.S. player Serena Williams has won more than ten major titles since 2009, while her sister Venus was a Wimbledon semi-finalist last year and this year as well.
This isn’t the first time Andy Murray has been supportive of women in tennis. When he was congratulated in 2016 by a presenter of the BBC for being the first tennis player to win two Olympic gold medals, he reminded the presenter that the accomplishment had already been outdone by the Williams sisters.
“I think Venus and Serena won about four each,” the tennis star responded.
In 2014, Murray actually became the first high-profile player to hire a woman as his coach when he began working with two-time Grand Slam champion Amelie Mauresmo. The athletes worked together for almost two years.
“It was a beautiful adventure,” said Mauresmo of their partnership. “A woman coaching a man, it breaks a few barriers in the world of men’s tennis.”
At the time, Murray wrote about their relationship on his website to defend his decision.
“Have I become a feminist?” he wrote. “Well, if being a feminist is about fighting so that a woman is treated like a man then yes, I suppose I have.”
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