5 things you need to know about Andy Murray and the Olympics


Andy Murray has been named Great Britain's flag bearer for the opening ceremony at the Rio Olympics.

The 2012 gold medallist and three-time grand slam champion is one of the biggest names in Britain's team.

We take a look at five things about Murray and the Games:

1. Unpromising start

Andy and Jamie Murray.
Andy and Jamie Murray in Beijing in 2008 (John Walton/EMPICS Sport)

Murray made his Olympic debut in Beijing in 2008 and big things were expected of the world number six but he flopped, losing in the first round of the singles to Lu Yen-hsun and then falling out with brother Jamie as they crashed out in the second round of the doubles.

He blamed getting too caught up in the Olympic experience, and said: "I think it gave me a lot of motivation and also an understanding of how important the Olympics is to a tennis player.

"When I lost there I know how disappointed I was. After you go back to your room in the Olympic village and there's a table of which medals have been won, you feel that you've not contributed. It's tough and I didn't like it."

2. Putting things right in London

Andy Murray.
Murray at London 2012 (Mark Humphrey/AP)

If Murray underperformed in Beijing, London four years later was a spectacular success.

He beat Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer back to back to win gold on Centre Court - becoming the first British man to win the Olympic singles gold medal in tennis since Josiah Ritchie in 1908. He also teamed up with Laura Robson to claim silver in the mixed doubles.

3. Making history

Andy Murray.
During a practice session at the Olympic Tennis Centre (Mike Egerton/PA)

Murray is looking to become the first man since tennis was brought back into the Games in 1988 to win singles medals at two separate Olympics.

4. Brotherly success

Andy and Jamie Murray.
At the Davis Cup (Mike Egerton/PA)

Murray is a big hope not just for success in singles but also doubles with Jamie.

The pair's success together in last year's Davis Cup triumph established them as one of the leading double acts, with Jamie now a grand slam winner and a recent world number one.

Should the pair win gold, they would be the second brothers in succession after American twins Bob and Mike Bryan, while there is also a precedent for British brothers claiming the title - Laurence and Reginald Doherty were gold medallists in 1900.

5. Pointless

Andy Murray.
Murray and other tennis players will be competing purely for medals (Florian Eisele/AELTC/PA)

Murray earned 750 ranking points for winning singles gold in 2012 but this year players will be competing purely for medals, with no ranking points awarded.

The decision was a factor in several players deciding not to make the trip to Rio, with Latvian Ernests Gulbis saying for him to play would be "tennis tourism".