Andy Murray was quick to correct a reporter who overlooked women’s tennis yesterday following his quarter-final defeat at Wimbledon.
The two-time Wimbledon champion was beaten by Sam Querrey, and in a post-match press conference he was asked about his opponent becoming the first American player to reach the semi-final of a Grand Slam in eight years – forgetting, of course, the likes of Serena Williams who alone has won 14 majors in that window.
“Andy, Sam is the first US player to reach a major semi final since 2009,” said the reporter. “How would you describe –”
“Male player,” Murray hit back.
“I beg your pardon?,” the journalist responded.
“Male player, right?,” said Murray.
“Yes, first male player, that’s for sure,” the reporter laughed.
— Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 13, 2017
American tennis player Nicole Gibbs and Scottish National Party leader Nicola Sturgeon were among those on Twitter to praise Murray for his defence of women’s tennis.
— Nicole Gibbs (@Gibbsyyyy) July 12, 2017
— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) July 12, 2017
Say what you will about Murray but so rare is the male athlete whose brain is so automatically programmed to credit accomplishments of women https://t.co/R29XBCGeEl
— Dawn Rhodes ???? (@rhodes_dawn) July 12, 2017
This is not the first time that Murray has stood up for women, in a sport which is often in the headlines for its struggles with equal pay and sexism.
At the Rio 2016 Olympics, John Inverdale said to Murray: “You’re the first person to ever win two Olympic gold tennis medals, that’s an extraordinary feat, isn’t it?”
To which Murray simply smiled and replied: “I think Venus and Serena have won about four each…”