Out of all the indoor tournaments I have watched in the past, the 02 still features as one of my favourites and its safe to say that the 2016 Barclay ATP World Tour tournament surpassed all expectations which was packed with an incredible number of exciting matches to watch and had me sitting on the edge of my seat most of the time intently watching exciting points played out whether a singles or doubles match. Not withstanding the fact the number of matches played by our home-grown hero, Andy Murray (now Sir Andy Murray), was my main focus but it all seemingly added to the excitement of the 2016 tournament.

IMG_9735The 02 itself is an unusual marquee construction and its huge cavernous interior is noticeable from the moment you walk inside where there are is an unlimited choice of bars, restaurants and night clubs. This year’s media centre had a new location on the ground floor not far from the Fan area and if anything easier to access seats and interview room not to mention the restaurant which served delicious meals during the entire week and had a much welcomed free wine and beer bar exclusive to members of the press…!!  The area where the old media centre used to be is to become a shopping mall which is expected to finished by the middle of this year – in plenty of time for the 2017 ATP Tour Finals in November. Coming to think of it, the one thing the 02 lacked was proper shops and I can’t wait for this year’s tournament and find time wander around the shops between day and evening sessions. .

With the world’s top 8 players playing in a series of round robin singles matches that are divided into two groups of four aptly called John McEnroe and Ivan Lendl – for obvious reasons – there  was plenty of opportunities to watch Murray who was drawn to play in the McEnroe group with his rival Novak Djokovic in Lendl’s group, (doubles groups were named Edberg/Jarry and Fleming/McEnroe).

IMG_9871In my opinion Murray’s toughest match came by way of the match he played against Kei Nishikori, which was won in three nail-biting sets, 6-7,6-4,6-4, but more importantly consolidated his position as the World’s number one player. However, there was one major obstacle to overcome and that was to win the finals whether against Djokovic or another player. Winning all three of his round robin matches and his semifinals meant ending up meeting his nemesis in the finals. Should Djokovic win, Murray’s reign as the newly crowned World Number One would be over. Fortunately his matches against Marin Cilic and Stan Warwrinka went to two sets and less intense compared to the match against Nishikori which he won in three tough sets. In the end, the one match everyone was undoubtedly looking forward to was the encounter between Murray and Djokovic with so much at stake and had me sitting on the edge of their seats, but it was Djokovic who surprisingly faltered with Murray producing some scintillating tennis to win in two sets and was crowned the end the of year world number one tennis player.

What a wonderful dream come true for Murray, who in 2016 had won titles at Queen’s and Wimbledon, an Olympic Gold medal, and now the ATP World Tour finals. What a year for Sir Andy Murray! 

 

PS – Gradually catching up with blogs!!??

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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