EXCLUSIVE – On the fifth anniversary of Britain’s Davis Cup win, captain Leon Smith reflects on glorious year
It was a moment British tennis fans feared they would never see again, yet Andy Murray helped to make the dream of a Davis Cup win possible on this day five years ago.
Murray’s iconic lob that saw him clinch the final with a win against Belgium’s David Goffin in Ghent will forever be etched into the memories of those who witnessed it as the defining moment of the run to glory, yet this was a season to remember for a team led superbly by captain Leon Smith.
In an exclusive interview with Tennis365, Smith reflected on a story that barely seemed possible when he took over a Great Britain team that was languishing in Europe/Africa Zone Group II.
Five years after his appointment, Smith got his hands on the trophy and here he reflects on the achievement with real pride:
It is amazing that it is five years ago, the time flies by. We are very fortunate that we are reminded about it a lot. It was just incredible.
When I’m asked to pick out the best moment, it’s difficult.
Winning is obviously the best moment because the win is what it is remembered for, but it was more than that.
The ties in Glasgow against America and Australia were so special, for so many reasons. To have the Murrays and to a much lesser extent myself being Scottish added to the story.
You don’t get to see too much tennis up there and the fans just idolise the Murrays.
The noise in the stadium was just incredible and the atmosphere inside that stadium for the semi-final against Australia when the Murrays won the Doubles match (against Lleyton Hewitt and Sam Groth) was off the charts. It was the atmosphere I’ve sat in and I’ll never forget it.
Then we had the travelling fans in Gent for the final and they were fantastic. They followed us all the way to get to that point and it was so special to give them the winning moment.
Andy got all the headlines, but it was a real team effort. From James Ward amazing win against John Isner in the first match to incredible performances in all four ties.
Then you have the day when you get the win and get the trophy. It was an amazing story and I’m so lucky to have played a small part in it.
I always remember the night after we won, the fans were all in the hotel bar and we had some great times with them. The away support we have is amazing and that continues five years on.
We also had a private room in the hotel with friends and family as well, which was a really nice way of doing it.
I’m so privileged to have those kind of memories and you never get bored of looking back at the clips. They are always on social media and I have seen some popping up this week.
Those home and away ties were special and that is the one thing we miss from the new format of the Davis Cup, but no one can ever take away the memories of what our team did in 2015.
#TBT#OnThisDay in 2015, @andy_murray ended 79 years of hurt for @BritishTennis as he clinched the #DavisCup title! pic.twitter.com/QddscbmuRn
— Davis Cup (@DavisCup) November 29, 2018
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