As we move closer to December’s much-anticipated Battle of the Brits – Scotland versus England event at P&J Live, tennis hero Jamie Murray will serve up a series of exclusive columns for the Press and Journal.
In this opening instalment, Jamie talks about how British success at events like Wimbledon would provide a boost for the Scotland versus England showdown in Aberdeen.
He also reveals his predictions for his fellow British men’s players at SW19, his hope he can overcome an injury problem to compete, and how his trip to Wembley got him fired up to put on a blockbuster event and pull off a result for Scotland at P&J Live.
Wimbledon always a huge boost – and can crank up excitement for our event at Aberdeen’s P&J Live
Being back at Wimbledon feels like a significant step forward following the problems thrown up by the Covid-19 pandemic over the last year or so.
It was obviously the only Grand Slam which didn’t happen last year because of the time it fell within the tennis season and pandemic.
A lot of players would have been very excited yesterday to get out there again in front of what – at 50% to begin with – is a decent fan capacity.
It’s huge for us to experience playing in front of big numbers again. Having the atmosphere is what makes Wimbledon so special and it can help players find the extra marginal gains which bring out a host of memorable performances over the two weeks.
Wimbledon is always a huge boost for the sport in Britain, and I hope it can help crank up the excitement for our Battle of the Brits event at P&J Live in Aberdeen in December.
From my perspective, if the guys involved in the Battle of the Brits – Scotland versus England event can do really well at tournaments like Wimbledon, the more excited supporters will be to come and see those stars in action at our event.
There will be plenty of opportunities for the fans who are in London and the vast majority who are watching at home to see our home talents play over the first week at SW19.
Everyone will be glued to the BBC these next two weeks, which is why we’re really thrilled that Battle of the Brits – Scotland versus England is going to be shown live on BBC iPlayer. If people can’t get to Aberdeen – or Wimbledon for that matter – they can still be part of the tournament.
Many of the British guys are among the top-30 in the world at what they do, with some in the top-10 elite. The likes of Cam Norrie and Dan Evans in the singles, and Joe Salisbury and Neal Skupski in the doubles, are all having a great time of it at the moment.
With regards to what the British men can achieve at Wimbledon? I think several can have a good run at their events.
Battle of the Brits team-mate Norrie will think he can beat anybody after Queen’s run
Cam Norrie was on the TV a lot last week during his amazing run to the final at Queen’s. He’ll be full of confidence with the way he’s been playing over the last few months.
To be seeded at Wimbledon this year is an amazing effort and I’m sure he will feel he can beat anybody going into his match with Lucas Pouille today.
With Andy, it’s a bit more unknown because of his lack of matches. He’s barely played in the last two months, but the fact he’s getting back out to play on Centre Court – a place he’s had amazing success – in front of a lot of people, hopefully it can inspire him and see him enjoy competing again.
For me, personally, I’ve been having issues with my neck and haven’t really practised since I withdrew from Eastbourne last Wednesday.
Bruno Soares and myself have been drawn against Nicholas Monroe and Vasek Pospisil in the first round of the men’s doubles.
It’s just about getting myself fit over the next couple of days so, when I do step on the court on Wednesday or Thursday, I’m ready to compete at 100%.
Fingers crossed for full crowd in north-east, as Scotland showing at Wembley inspires
It’ll be great for fans who are there at Wimbledon this week, but my hope is those who can’t get to London and haven’t been able to access live tennis for a couple of years can get really excited about the prospect of coming to our event in December.
Fingers crossed we’ll have a full capacity of 6,500 people and it was really exciting in recent days to hear Scotland’s national clinical director Jason Leitch talking about the potential for full crowds at football matches from August.
It seems they are doing a great job with the vaccination programme, which will help the live event industry and with getting us back to normal life generally.
There’s still a lot going on when it comes to organising Battle of the Brits at the moment, and I’ve got a great team to help with the logistics of it all while I continue to play on tour.
The rare opportunity we’ll have to represent Scotland continues to fire me up, and I hope the fans are as excited as I am.
I was at the Euro 2020 game between England and Scotland at Wembley a couple of weeks ago. It was an amazing experience to go and support the boys.
They were incredible – as were the Tartan Army – and it’s exactly the sort of Scottish performance and atmosphere we want to bring to Aberdeen at the end of the year.
Tickets for Battle of the Brits in Aberdeen
For Battle of the Brits – Scotland versus England tickets ahead of the event on December 21 and 22 click here.
The tennis action will be spread across three sessions, with two-time Wimbledon champion, US Open winner and double Olympic gold medallist Andy Murray playing in every session.