Former Wimbledon champion Andy Murray has become the 46th man in the Open era to reach 500 career ATP singles match wins, and was given a cake to prove it. Wimbledon.com reports...
Murray had to dig deep to prevail 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 against Kevin Anderson in the searing Miami heat.
The Scot joins an elite group of players to reach the milestone alongside eight other currently active ATP players.
The world No.4 broke onto the tour back in 2005 as a 15-year-old and has since risen to the upper echelons of the game, with two Grand Slam titles and an Olympic gold medal under his belt.
Despite playing in a highly competitive era with Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic as his main rivals, the Scot has managed to secure 31 titles at the cost of just 155 defeats.
The 27-year-old first won a singles match on the ATP Tour at the Queen’s Club in London ten years ago, in June 2005.
Murray cruised past then ranked world No.110 Santiago Ventura 6-1, 6-2, before defeating the huge serving American Taylor Dent in straight sets. Sadly in the last 16 Murray lost in three close sets to then world No.20 Thomas Johansson but the Scot has never looked back.
His first Wimbledon was also in 2005, when a comprehensive 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 victory over world No.13 Radek Stepanek catapulted the teenager into the spotlight. In the third round he led Argentine David Nalbandian by two sets before valiantly losing 3-2.
A 2-6, 6-1, 7-6(3) win over 2002 Wimbledon champion Lleyton Hewitt provided Murray his first title at the start of 2006 in San Jose.
After that landmark victory, win No.100 came in a final as Murray beat Spaniard Fernando Verdasco 6-2, 6-3 on carpet in the final of the 2007 St. Petersburg Open.
A third round 7-6, 6-4 victory over Fabio Fognini in the picturesque Monte Carlo handed Murray his 200th win in 2009, before reaching the next milestone of 300 wins on the opening day of the ATP World Tour Finals in London by sweeping aside Robin Soderling.
It was then in Paris where Murray reached No.400 by beating Japan’s Tatsuma Ito in the first round of Roland Garros.
Despite heartache losing his first four finals, Murray won his maiden Grand Slam title at the US Open in 2012 to notch up No.370. Murray survived a comeback to beat Novak Djokovic 7-6(10), 7-5, 2-6, 3-6, 6-2 in New York.
His success at Flushing Meadows was largely attributed to a stunning London 2012 Olympics, which were held at Wimbledon just before the US Open, providing the catalyst.
Murray evidently thrived wearing the colours of the Union Jack and, having broken down in tears during his runners up speech in the 2012 Wimbledon final, returned to Centre Court to gain revenge on Roger Federer 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 and land a euphoric gold during win No.361.
His passion for representing Great Britain has also been apparent in the Davis Cup. The ardent Scot has been a regular since making his debut in 2005, including 21 singles rubbers victories, and will be part of Leon Smith's side for a second consecutive World Group quarter-final this July.
One of many crowning glories has to be his 2013 Wimbledon crown. After a barren run of 77 years, Britain could celebrate a British men's singles champion.
Murray was in scintillating form to win his second Grand Slam at SW19, defeating rival Novak Djokovic 6-4, 7-5, 6-4 which was the most precious victory at No.413.
At just 27, Murray has a long time left at the top of the game if he can maintain his extremely high standards. Chasing more Grand Slams and titles, perhaps Murray can reach the 1000 career wins Roger Federer did earlier this season.
Active players with 900+ match wins (data via ATP)
Career Match Record
1) Roger Federer
2) Rafael Nadal
3) Novak Djokovic
625-142 (prior to Miami QF)
4) David Ferrer
623-296 (prior to Miami QF)
5) Lleyton Hewitt
6) Tommy Haas
7) Tomas Berdych
507-266 (prior to Miami QF)
8) Tommy Robredo
9) Andy Murray
20:08It brings me no pleasure but it's time to bring the curtain down for another year. Seemed somehow appropriate to leave the last word to Roger Federer. Thanks a billion for reading. What a fortnight, what a final, fast forward to 2015 please...
20:03"I already have seven. It's not like I need another one. But it would have been awfully nice to have it. I think that's what the feeling was of the people, and I felt that... I know they love tennis. They love tennis after we're all gone."View all