Andy Murray had a bloody good 2016, didn't he?

Updated: 

Andrew Murray, eh? Andy blooming Murray.

What a motherflipping year it has been.

The 29-year-old had his first child. Won Wimbledon. Won Olympic gold. Became world number one. Won Sports Personality of the Year. Is rumoured to be in for a knighthood. Oh, and he banked 16 million US dollars in prize money.

On top of that, he finished 2016 on a white-hot 24-match winning streak.

Murray retains his gold medal (Owen Humphreys/PA)
Murray retains his gold medal (Owen Humphreys/PA)

In a year punctuated with trauma, sadness, and Donald Trump, the taciturn Dunblane lad won nine titles. Nine.

Brother Jamie became world doubles number one too, making mum Judy prouder than a pride of preening peacocks.

Like a steak on its 28th day of hanging, Andy has entered his prime.

The 6ft 3ins Scot has hit peak fitness, power and experience, using it all to usurp Novak Djokovic from his 123-week reign at the top of the tennis mountain.

So, how did it happen?

Andy after losing to Novak in Australia (Andrew Brownbill/AP)
Andy after losing to Novak in Australia (Andrew Brownbill/AP)

The year didn't begin as it ended.

Rewinding back to January, Andy was beaten in the final of the Australian Open by Djokovic. It was his 11th loss in their past 12 games.

Two weeks later, he was welcoming baby Sophia into the world with his wife Kim.

Andy and Kim at the Wimbledon champions dinner (Dominic Lipinski/PA)
Andy and Kim at the Wimbledon champions dinner (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

This magical moment was followed by crashing out of tournaments in California and Miami. Then, in the Madrid Open, he fell to the Serb in yet another final - and again in the French Open final after that.

This double-blow from his nemesis saw Andy fall to number three in the world.

Perhaps he could lay the blame for this early-year form at the door of fatherhood.

But, it all changed with the return of head coach Ivan Lendl in June. He helped arrest the Scot's pattern of inconsistency and set him on a journey along a diamond-studded path.

Murray after winning Wimbledon (Ben Curtis/AP)
Murray after winning Wimbledon (Ben Curtis/AP)

Enchanting tennis and monumental wins followed at Queen's club, Wimbledon, Rio, China, Vienna and Paris.

And, it was fitting the final game of the season was a masterful display against Djokovic, leading to Andy's first ATP World Tour Final win in 10 attempts and cementing his place as best in the world.

It showed what can happen inside 12 little months.

For the past few years Djokovic has been bionic, unassailable. The steely Serb seemed more efficient than a chess supercomputer. Never tiring, never making mistakes, never blinking.

Out of 11 Grand Slam finals in his career, Murray has won just three times and in many of those where he fell short, it was the Serb who crushed him.

He has been near the top, but never quite gone on an unplayable, supreme, imperious run until now.

Djokovic looks downcast after losing to Murray (AP)
Djokovic looks downcast after losing to Murray (AP)

At 29, Murray is the second-oldest player to debut at number one making it even more important for him to stay there as long as possible.

Eyes will now turn to the Australian Open in January, where a wounded Djokovic will start trying to claw his way back to the top of the mountain.

It's up to Murray to keep him scrabbling on the lower slopes.