Andy Murray has come through his first competitive tennis match in almost five months unscathed in a comical exhibition against Roger Federer in Glasgow.
Murray, who hasn’t played since a quarterfinal loss at Wimbledon in July due to a lingering hip injury, looked more comfortable as the match wore on but Federer showed the class that has seen him win seven titles in 2017 to prevail 10-6 in a Championship tiebreaker after the first two sets were split.
It was Federer’s first tennis match in Murray’s native Scotland, and the 19-time Grand Slam champion didn’t disappoint.
The proud Scot lost 6-3 3-6 10-6 on a champions tie-break, but the real winners were undoubtedly the fans in attendance, who had the pleasure of witnessing Federer in the finest tartan.
At the end of the first set, Federer said during a courtside interview that he would gladly wear a kilt if one was produced and the 19-time grand slam singles champion quickly found himself dressed in the traditional Highland attire to roars of delight from the crowd.
— Ashish TV (@Ashish__TV) November 7, 2017
Typically, Federer played with ageless grace and managed to hold serve, with the fans – and Murray – clearly amused.
“It was matching to my outfit, I couldnt believe [it],” Federer said of his impromptu costume change. “I couldn’t believe how quickly it was organised. When I took it off I felt naked, it felt nice and snug and heavy.”
Murray himself later got in on the dress-up act, wearing a comedy tartan hat and wig during the tie-break.
Before the match, Federer also tweeted a picture of a pre-match gift from Murray, which included homemade shortbread from his granny and a can of Irn Bru.
— Roger Federer (@rogerfederer) November 7, 2017
Murray, who before the match spoke of his desire to return early in 2018, had said on court about his comeback from a hip injury: “I was very nervous beforehand, I didn’t know how I’d feel.
“But I did okay. It was good and I’m really just so happy to be back on the court and playing in front of everyone.
“I’ve really, really missed it hopefully I’ll be back beginning of next year.”