Tag Archives: History

Congratulations Andy Murray!

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Andy Murray

Wow. After 4 Grand Slam final loses, and 76 years to the day since the last British man managed to hold that trophy, British tennis has been craving this day. The day Andy Murray won a Grand Slam title.

I couldn’t watch it myself, due to the time difference and the match being on Sky so I was refreshing pages on the Internet, and checking my Twitter feed for any possible updates! I eventually gave in at midnight as I had to be at work for 8am this morning!

After Murray’s heart breaking defeat to Federer in the Wimbledon final, a few weeks later, he avenged that loss by beating him in the Olympic final to claim the gold medal. Murray reached the final once more, to face one of his biggest rivals, and life long friend, Novak Djokovic, and claimed his very first Grand Slam win. That means Nadal, Djokovic, Federer, and Murray have all won a Grand Slam this year!

Murray hasn’t always has the support of the British public. After he was questioned about whom he would be supporting in the World Cup of 2006 (after Scotland had failed to qualify), he stated he would ‘support anyone but England.’ Murray later apologised for this comment and claimed it was a light-hearted interview and never meant to cause any offence. This however, left a stain on his reputation and he was already seen as a grumpy, emotionless Scot.

There were claims that Murray was ‘Anti-English’ regardless of him living in London, having an English girlfriend, and identifying himself as British and Scottish. There was also the idea that Murray was British when he won and Scottish when he lost. My friend is upset she can no longer say ‘I’ve won as many Grand Slams as the world number 3’. I have to admit, I too, loved that little cracker!

Somewhere between the natural British cynicism, Murray’s Wimbledon tears, and the Olympic spirit, Murray was playing the best tennis of his career and won the heart of the nation. The Grand Slam win didn’t come as easily to him as his fellow rivals Federer, Nadal, and Djokovic who all got their first wins at a younger age.

He may be late to the party, but I hope Andy is accepted as one of the great four. The win, I’m sure was worth the wait, and I hope to see many more! Murray has put the icing on the cake to celebrate the end of London 2012 with one more cheer. Andy’s Grand Slam win wasn’t only important to him personally, but to British tennis, and to Britain. Hopefully Fred Perry can rest easy and remain only as a peice of trivia. Congratulations (Note To The Queen:  Sir?) Andy Murray, you’re a worthy winner, and for the second time this summer, you’ve made history!

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The Olympic Opening Ceremony

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Opening Ceremony

It watched by millions across the world and after the Beijing Olympics and seven years of planning expectations were high for Britain and the man behind the plan, Danny Boyle.

It was a very British celebration, very cultural, historic, and diverse. If the Brits know how to do anything, it’s to put on one hell of a show, and to show the world how great we are. For example, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Concert earlier this year, and the Royal Wedding last year. It is incredible that even in times of economic and financial uncertainty that our little nation can be so proud and patriotic of its history and culture which make Britain what it is today. And yes the walk through of every country participating in the Olympics was a bore but it’s not our fault! It would have been quicker if we were still an empire and owned half of those countries. But hey, you can’t win them all.

It included everything from agriculture, the Industrial Revolution, the NHS, Jame Bond, the Queen, J.K. Rowling, Mr Bean, British music new and old and everything that screamed what a proud nation we are. And shame on you Americans tweeting Sir Kenneth Branagh was dressed as Abraham Lincoln when he was actually dressed as Isambard Kingdom Brunel who played a major role in the Industrial Revolution (a little history lesson for you there).

What did irritate me is the number of tweets and Facebook status’ which I saw at the beginning of the Ceremony of people complaining they didn’t understand what was happening. These are people who were born here, grew up here, and went to school here yet are so blatantly unaware of their own nation’s history and culture. Admittedly, the Olympic Ceremony was not a complete representation of Britain today due to the reforms, and high cost of living and the NHS most definitely is not what it used to be (courtesy of David Cameron) but it did represent the best of British.

It was a very different ceremony to Beijing, however, we live in a very different country where we are, when the occasion rises, proud. 99% of Brits will agree that it was a fantastic Opening Ceremony and that Danny Boyle is incredibly imaginative. Okay, he’s no Nicki Minaj ‘You a stupid hoe’ (lyrical genius!). I doubt it will take long for him to become Sir Danny Boyle, and quite rightly so. James Bond and the Queen = Genius.