Andy Murray is celebrating his sweetest success after casting aside Milos Raonic in straight sets to become the first British man in 81 years to snare two Wimbledon singles crowns.
Murray outclassed Canada’s first-time major finalist 6-4 7-6 (7-3) 7-6 (7-2) in Sunday’s title showdown to add a third grand slam trophy to his collection after also reigning at the All England Club in 2013 and at Flushing Meadows in 2012.
But unlike the intense relief he felt after enduring “so much stress and pressure” to end his country’s agonising 77-year men’s title drought last time around, Murray plans to savour this triumph.
“I feel happier this time. I feel more content this time,” the jubilant Scot said.
“I feel like this was sort of more for myself more than anything, and my team as well.
“We’ve all worked really hard to help get me in this position.
“Last time it was just pure relief and I didn’t really enjoy the moment as much, whereas I’m going to make sure I enjoy this one more than the others.”
Sunday’s emphatic win repeated his Queen’s Club final victory over Raonic and crowned a perfect summer reunion with supercoach Ivan Lendl.
Murray won his only two previous slams – plus an Olympic gold medal – under Lendl’s charge before splitting with the former world No.1 two years ago.
But with Lendl back in his box, Murray is 12 from 12 on grass and the first British man since Fred Perry in 1936 to hold the Wimbledon trophy aloft on multiple occasions.
“It’s the most important tournament for me every year. I’ve had some great moments here and some tough losses,” Murray said.
“So the win feels extra special because of the tough losses, so I’m proud to have my hands on the trophy again.”
Once again thrilling delirious home fans – including the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge watching on from the front row of the Royal Box – Murray’s triumph also comes ninth months after the local hero led Britain to its first Davis Cup title in 81 years.
Contesting his 11th grand slam final – but first not opposing tennis titans Roger Federer or Novak Djokovic – Murray had too much steel for the sixth seed, whose nervy net game in particular failed him on tennis’s greatest stage.
Murray grabbed the only break of the match in the seventh game before racing through the second-set tiebreaker to seize total command.
Unable to replicate the heroics of his semi-final victory over Federer, Raonic – Canada’s first-ever men’s grand slam singles finalist – failed to convert either of his only two break-point chances of the match in the fourth game of the third set.
Capitalising on his opponent’s opportunity lost, Murray again stepped up in the tiebreaker to storm to the title after two hours and 48 minutes.
In joining all-time greats Rod Laver, Bjorn Borg, Lendl, Raonic’s coaching consultant John McEnroe, Jim Courier, Djokovic and Federer as only the eighth man in the open era to reach the first three grand slam finals of the year, Murray also avoided being the first to lose all three.
Djokovic denied the Scot in Melbourne and Paris and the 29-year-old hopes victory after five grand slam finals losses to the world No.1 and three to Federer will open the floodgates.