Judy Murray receives honorary degree, says Andy will get freedom of Stirling next April
Published on 22 November 2013
Wimbledon champion Andy Murray will receive the freedom of the city of Stirling in April next year, his mother Judy has revealed.
Murray was granted the honour by Stirling officials following his US Grand Slam and Olympic wins last year but has yet to officially collect the honour.
Judy Murray said plans are in place for April, after the tennis star has completed his rehabilitation period for a back injury.
Murray trained as a youngster at the Gannochy National Tennis Centre in Stirling, near his hometown of Dunblane.
Picking up an honorary degree today from Stirling University, where the centre is based, Ms Murray said: "He was given the Freedom of the City and, yes, he has to collect that.
"Unfortunately he was laid up for a few months with back surgery then rehab on the injury, which meant he couldn't travel and had to stay close to physios and doctors, and then his rehab ran into the off season.
"So it's all scheduled for April time now, which will be great."
Ms Murray was based at the centre as Scottish national tennis coach between 1995 and 2004 and taught both Andy and his brother Jamie there as juniors.
A successful player herself, she won 64 junior and senior Scottish tennis titles. Now Ms Murray works with Britain's leading women and girl players and is captain of Britain's Fed Cup team, an international women's tennis event.
She is also leading a drive to increase the number of female tennis coaches.
Now a doctor of the University of Stirling, the institution said it wanted to recognise her ''outstanding'' contribution to tennis, sport and charitable causes.
Ms Murray said: ''It's a very special day for me. I've been coaching for over 20 years now, I love the sport, I love teaching, and I've been incredibly lucky to have a job that involves me in something that I really enjoy and that I really care about.
''Stirling was my second home when I was the Scottish national coach and I was working with a lot of the top Scottish junior players.
''This was our training centre. It was the first of its kind in Scotland and it happened to be in our back yard.
''We owe the University a great deal because without this facility and the tennis scholars acting as sparring partners for the Scottish kids, I don't think Jamie, Andy, Colin Fleming would have become the players they became.''
As well as her coaching work, the French and Business Studies graduate plans to create a new tennis centre near Stirling and is also involved in charitable fundraising, working to support cancer care campaigns.
Ms Murray said: "I think for me the biggest challenge will always be trying to grow the game up here (in Scotland) against a backdrop of bad weather and limited facilities and the fact that it's just 1% of the population at the moment that plays sport.
"Every time I go into a school the kids know who Andy is, they know who Jamie is, and they want to try tennis.
"So it's about creating opportunities for them to be able to do that, whether it's in the school gym hall or in the playground, to try to capitalise on the interest that there is at the moment. That's my big challenge just now."
Stirling University principal Professor Gerry McCormac said: "Judy Murray provides an outstanding example of what can be achieved with focus and determination. Whether in her role as a mother, a coach, or a charity fundraiser, her positive mindset is inspirational."http://www.heraldscotland.com/mobile/news/home-news/judy-murray-receives-honorary-degree-says-andy-will-get-freedom-of-stirling-next-apri.1385149673