Andy Murray should be recognised as a Scot, not a Brit
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Andy Murray of Britain kisses the trophy after his 7-6, 7-5, 2-6, 3-6, 6-2 win over Novak Djokovic of Serbia during their men's singles final match at the 2012 US Open tennis tournament September 10, 2012 in New York. AFP PHOTO/Stan HONDA
When will the tennis world recognise Andy Murray as Scottish instead of British?
Yesterday the 25-year-old won his first Slam, an historic day as Scotland’s first grand slam winner, and Great Britain’s first since Fred Perry in 1936.
The scoreline in all forms of media read Andy Murray (GB) defeated Novak Djokovic (SRB) 7-6 7-5 2-6 3-6 6-2.
But it should read Andy Murray (SCO).
In one of sport’s great mysteries, everywhere Murray plays as an individual he has (GB) after his name, as have every other Scot, Englishman, Welsh, and Irish tennis player in history, although I’m at a loss to recall any Welsh or Irish representatives of note.
Which begs the same question, why does Great Britain compete at the Olympic Games, and not individually as Scotland, England, Wales, and Northern Ireland as they do at the Commonwealth Games?
The question has been answered over the years, but not with any conviction.
Scottish golfers have won only two major golf championships since World War II – Sandy Lyle, the 1985 British Open, and 1988 Masters champion, with Paul Lawrie the 1999 British Open champion.
Both won their titles with (SCO) after their names.
The same applied to Sir Jackie Stewart when he won three formula one driver’s championship, Stephen Hendry when he won seven world snooker championships, and John Higgins when he won three.
And again with Colin McRae with his three world rally championships, Jim Watt capturing the WBC world lightweight crown, and Jocky Wilson when he won two world darts titles.
But not with cycling legend Sir Chris Hoy.
He won 11 world championship gold medals, and six Olympic golds to be the most successful Olympian of all time representing Great Britain. He has won gold twice as a Scot at the Comm Games, and looks likely to fittingly call halt to his stellar career as a Scot at the 2014 Comm Games in Glasgow.
As for Andy Murray, he generally wears the Scottish thistle on his shirt, but would like to be universally recognised and identified as a Scot on the tennis circuit.
And there’s not one valid reason why that can’t be done.
After all, Martin Laird is identified as a Scot playing in the FedExCup finals, Luke Donald, Lee Westwood, Ian Poulter, and Justin Rose as English, and the world’s number one golfer Rory McIlroy, and Graeme McDowell, from Northern Ireland.
Time to make it right for the first time since 1877.
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