|PR makeover fails to soften Andy Murray's cutting edge|
But it’s not just his fitness, his technique and commitment that have improved over the past season or so, his PR machine has worked constantly to change an image that was seen as too Scottish, too dour and too petulant to attract the type of adulation and support that followed his predecessor Tim Henman.
So the proclamations of Scottishness have been toned down, he’s lost the Saltire wristband and started appearing in softer lifestyle media pieces while no doubt getting some intensive coaching on how to keep a painted smile on for the cameras.
And to an extent it's working, particularly to foreign crowds, but to the All England Club and its members he still is and is likely to remain an outsider.
For he is not, and never will be one of their own. When his potential became realised and he outgrew the coaching expertise and facilities available in Scotland it was not to Wimbledon he headed with his mother and mentor Judy to take him to the next level, it was to Spain.
As his reputation grows they are also finding it increasingly hard to stomach that the reality is he has what their own great white hope Henman never had, a real will to win. Aged 22 Murray has now won 11 titles including three Masters Series wins. Throughout his whole career Henman registered the same number of wins but only one prestigious Masters title.
If and when he wins a major title he will no doubt be crowned as the saviour of UK tennis and a product of team GB.
If he has learned anything about the media in his career so far he would do well to distance himself from this circus. As Formula One legend Jackie Stewart will testify the winning is done under a Union Jack but when things aren’t going so well you all too quickly turn into that ‘losing Scot’
Somehow I don’t think Murray will be losing any sleep over such matters though. Despite the PR attempts to soften his image you don’t have to scratch beneath the surface very far to find where his true patriotism lies. He is his own man and knows what the reality is, he knows he has the making of a champion, while Henman for all his popularity was always a nearly man,
And no where in the rule book does it say you need the All England Club’s blessing to be their champion.