Andy Murray to play with Serena Williams in Wimbledon doubles
Andy Murray will play alongside Serena Williams in the mixed doubles at Wimbledon, the Scot's management team have announced.
After another day of will-they-won’t-they? rumour and speculation, with the American teasing everyone about the possibility of the partnership, Murray’s camp finally confirmed it last night.
By registering his intentions to play with Williams before today’s 11am deadline, Murray will be stepping up his comeback after hip surgery, having already put himself in the draw for the men’s doubles with French partner Pierre-Hugues Herbert.
Williams was asked about the chances of her playing alongside Murray as soon as she’d won through to the second round of the women’s singles. “I’m going to see how I feel, then take it from there,” she said. Pressed again, the 23-times Grand Slam champion, who’s also returning from injury, added: “I could use extra matches so … could be something.”
Then she said: “If you guys really want it, then I’ll do it.” A journalist confirmed that he really did want them to pair up and Williams laughed: “All right, done. Just for you guys. Don’t forget.”
But she was anything but vague about her admiration for Murray. She said his credentials as a court partner were impeccable, not least because he’s a feminist.
“We’re a lot alike on the court,” she said, “and I've always liked that about him. Then there’s his work ethic - honestly it’s just off the charts. I've always respected that about him. His fitness, everything. To do what he's done in an era where there's been so many other great male tennis players. There’s been so much competition and he’s risen about it.
“There are so many things to be admired but above all he really stands out for speaking up about women's issues, no matter what. You can tell he has a really strong woman in his life. I think above all that is just fantastic.”