The 35-year-old Scot is one of the stars at the Bose Open in Stuttgart – and a great role model. He would like to donate his prize to a noble cause.
One of the stars of the Boss Open in Weissenhof is ranked 69th in the world, which doesn’t sound very impressive, but it is due to the many injuries in recent years. However: Scotsman Andy Murray comes with the knowledge that he won three Grand Slams in his career, and was also number one in the world rankings. He’s now 35, and what he says at his opening press conference in Stuttgart weighs. The Briton, who drove his way to the state capital of Baden-Württemberg for the first time, showed during his performance that he is a great athlete – and an even greater role model.
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The tennis player decided to donate his prize money by the end of the year to children in Ukraine via UNICEF. Children who are experiencing incredible suffering with their families. “What is happening in Ukraine right now is horrific. Children are losing their homes, separated from their families or even killed,” Murray says, adding, “There is not much I can do, but I am at least trying to give something back.” It also gives him extra motivation. So staying in the tournament as long as possible – that’s for good reason.
And Andy Murray’s commitment also has a very sad cause. He himself went through a terrible experience at the age of nine. He grew up in Dunblane, Scotland, with his brother James, his parents divorced early. He attended the local elementary school where he witnessed a school massacre in March 1996. A 43-year-old man shot and killed 16 first-graders and a teacher – something you’ll never forget for the rest of your life. “It took me several years to process this event,” says Murray, who survived the disaster.
Last badly shaken
The Scotsman still commemorates Dunblane’s murder on numerous occasions and talks about the recent spate of shootings in the US, he says: “There have already been 200 such mass shootings this year. So, in the US, you should start to think about How to change that culture.” In the UK, gun laws were changed after the Dunblane disaster, and nothing similar has happened since.
His athletic status, no matter how hard he rocked the past three years, is nothing more than a side note compared to these events – Andy Murray himself is back. In 2021, he planned to start the season with a replacement at the Australian Open, but after testing positive for Covid-19 in mid-January, he was unable to spend the required time in quarantine. After a few months, a groin injury forced him to take breaks, he was forced to withdraw from his Olympic participation and in the world rankings, he led the track further and further down the field.
never give up
But Andy Murray never gave up, worked on himself, and believed in himself. “I’m well prepared and feeling good,” he said before the first round kicks off on Tuesday against Australian Christopher O’Connell, a Stuttgart qualifier who is currently 148th in the world. Murray wants to show really good tennis again – as it was before. And he wants to get acquainted with Stuttgart, because the Briton has already tested in tournaments in Hamburg, Munich and Cologne that Germany and white sports come together. “Tennis is part of the culture in this country and I’ve heard a lot of good things about the tournament here,” Andy Murray said during his impressive performance in Stuttgart. All that’s left for the kids in Ukraine is to hope the man will also be in the final on Sunday – because every cent counts.