Britain’s most successful tennis player ever, triple Grand Slam winner, double Olympic gold medallist and Davis Cup winner, Andy Murray needs no introduction here!
Andy was proud to have launched Andy Murray Live in 2016, saying:
“I’ve wanted to host my own exhibition event for a long time, because I’m aware of the power these can have in raising a lot of money, and awareness, for charities.
Andy Murray Live 2016 went better than I could have imagined – the event ran really smoothly, it sold out very quickly and we were able to donate over £300,000 to Unicef and Young People’s Futures.”
WE ALSO ASKED ANDY
What do you like most about being back in Scotland?
I don’t get back to Scotland as much as I’d like but when I do, I like to spend as much time as I can in Dunblane. I also really like driving in Scotland, because it’s so much easier than driving down in London – there’s no traffic on the roads, and the view out the window is beautiful!
You’ve played Roger Federer 25 times, winning 11 times – how do you think playing in front of a home crowd will help you beat him?
Roger is one of the greatest players of all time, and has beaten me lots of times, but if the crowd is anything like it was here in 2016 or at the recent Davis Cup ties, I don’t think he stands a chance! The crowd can really lift you when you’re on court, especially when the match isn’t going your way. There is no doubt that there will be a lot of Roger Federer fans in the crowd, but hopefully there will be more cheering for me on the night.
You must be extremely proud of your brother’s achievements in tennis over the past few years as well. How will it feel stepping out on court with him at Andy Murray Live 2017?
Yes Jamie has had an incredible 18 months and totally deserved to get to world number one as he has worked so hard for it. I love playing with Jamie. We don’t get to do it too much unfortunately because we are so busy playing our own tournament matches and it’s a pretty grueling schedule as it is. Playing the Davis Cup together was great though – the whole team feels like a family and so winning together was one of the best feelings I’ve had in my career.
Bahrami is an interesting addition to this year’s line up. Why did you choose to include him?
Mansour Bahrami is one of the greatest tennis showmen on the circuit. He is brilliant to watch and brilliant to play against. We had a lot of fun during the doubles last year – with Tim Henman and Grigor Dimitrov who both put on a kilt during the match – so wanted to make sure this year was going to be just as entertaining.
Arguably one of the world’s greatest tennis players of all time, Roger Federer is also one of the most popular players to watch, so we were very lucky to have him participating in Andy Murray Live 2017.
Roger’s achievements are endless but here are some of his most impressive feats:
Roger holds the record for the most weeks as world number one – 302 weeks
Roger has won 18 Grand Slam titles, reaching each Grand Slam final at least five times (another record). He has also won a record six ATP World Tour Finals
Roger has won Wimbledon seven times, equaling the record held by Pete Sampras, and the US Open five times equaling the records held by Pete Sampras and Jimmy Connors. He is in fact the only man to have won five consecutive US Open titles.
WE ALSO ASKED ROGER
How do you feel about playing Andy in front of his home crowd?
ANSWER TO FOLLOW
What are you looking forward to most about visiting Scotland?
ANSWER TO FOLLOW
We don’t often see you playing doubles. How do you think you’ll do against the formidable pairing of the Murray brothers?
ANSWER TO FOLLOW
Jamie returned to Glasgow to play in Andy Murray Live for the second time, and paired up with his younger brother in the doubles again.
Jamie had a fantastic 2016, reaching world number one in doubles for the first time, and winning the Australian Open and US Open doubles with his partner Bruno Soares. These Grand Slam wins added to the Wimbledon title he won in 2007 in the mixed doubles, with partner Jelena Jankovic.
Jamie and Andy had great success as a partnership in the 2015 Davis Cup campaign. The pair won important matches against France, Australia and Belgium, helping to secure the first win for Great Britain in a Davis Cup for 79 years.
Jamie currently holds 16 career titles.
Former British number one, with a career high ranking of world number 4, Tim Henman was the first player since Roger Taylor to reach the semi-finals of a Grand Slam.
He went on to reach six Grand Slam semi-finals and won 15 ATP career titles (11 in singles and 4 in doubles). Henman also racked up 40 wins playing for Great Britain’s Davis Cup team and won a silver medal at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games with Neil Broad.
Now retired, Tim is still heavily involved in the sport. He is a member of the All England Lawn Tennis Committee of Management and the LOCOG Committee Sport Advisory Group, and is well known for his insightful tennis commentary on the BBC.
Although Tim is still regularly seen on a tennis court, he also now finds time to play golf at a very decent level, playing off a scratch handicap. And he also keeps himself busy with numerous charitable initiatives, including for his own charity, Kids At Heart, which was founded in 2000, and he is Chairman of the ATP Charities Programme.
Mansour Bahrami is a retired professional tennis player, who is better known for his performances on the ATP Champions Cicruit where he is hugely popular as a result of his great showmanship on court. His flamboyant style and propensity for trick shots have won him fans the world over.
Growing up in Iran, Bahrami learned to play tennis with a rusty metal frying pan, only getting his first racket at the age of 13. In 1975, his talent had shone through enough for Bahrami to make the Iranian Davis Cup team aged just 16.
However, his career progression was to hit a brick wall shortly after, when the Shah was deposed in Iran, and tennis was banned in the country. For three years, Bahrami did not pick up a racket.
When a tournament was arranged in Tehran, Bahrami saw his chance, and won, receiving a plane ticket as a prize. He flew to France, staying there for the next six years and playing in small tournaments to earn some money, often living on the streets and surviving on one baguette for three days. When his visa ran out, Bahrami lived as an illegal immigrant in France, until 1981 when he reached the third round of the French Open and the media took up his cause and demanded he be allowed to stay in the country.
Bahrami has continued to play the game he loves since then. He won two ATP Tour titles and three ATP Challenger titles, all in the doubles. And as a doubles specialist, he will team up with Roger Federer at Andy Murray Live, to take on the Murray brothers, in what promises to be an extremely entertaining line up.