Andy Murray thinks crying after losing the Wimbledon final to Roger Federer in 2012 was a turning point in his relationship with the British public. The 29-year-old star believes he was more warmly received by the nation after he burst into tears during the post-match presentation ceremony at SW19.
The Scot admitted that earlier in his career he would mask his true emotions with angry gestures. But Murray has confessed his reaction to defeat in his first-ever Wimbledon final has proven to be a landmark moment.
"You may have noticed I work in a pretty emotional job," the two-time Wimbledon champion told the Huffington Post. "Whether I'm winning or losing there's a huge amount going on under the surface. The pressure is always there and quite honestly, at times it's hard to hide.
"In my younger years I sometimes struggled to manage what was going on in my head. Moments of anger or frustration would spill out and it rarely helped me win. But when I cried on the centre court at Wimbledon after losing to Roger Federer, some people saw me in a different light."
The Olympic gold medal-winning star – who retained his title in Rio earlier this year – is currently campaigning to encourage more men to open up about mental health issues. And on reflection, Murray said he has no regrets about crying after his four-set loss to Federer (4–6, 7–5, 6–3, 6–4) in 2012.
"People didn't laugh or think less of me, it was the opposite," the Scot shared. "It felt like they respected me more. They respected me for letting off the pressure cooker of emotion and for letting the mask slip.
"Sadly, many men don't feel they can let the mask slip. Many men express their stresses and emotions in self-destructive and sometimes life-ending ways. They build up emotion and don't have the tools to deal with what's going on in their lives."