Murray in war of words with Wade over 'drama queen' jibe
Scot defies crippling back spasm at French Open but gets criticised by former pros
ANDY MURRAY pulled off one of the "most remarkable" victories of his career at the French Open yesterday as he overcame a crippling back spasm to beat Jarkko Nieminen in four sets, having surrendered the first 6-1 after being rendered virtually immobile.
But the aftermath of his comeback was dominated by the criticism from former pros. By far the most hurtful came from fellow Brit Viginia Wade who sparked a major war of words with the Scot when she called him a "drama queen" and appeared to accuse him of overexaggerating his injury.
Other ex-players including Jim Courier and Boris Becker were rather less scathing when they suggested that Murray should have sacrificed his dreams of winning the French Open and retired, rather than risking further injury that could jeopardise his chances at Wimbledon or the Olympics.
Murray has suffered back problems all year and woke up on Thursday with a spasm, although it was not in the same area that has been troubling him. But after hobbling through practice he took the decision to play against Nieminen.
But he could hardly move during the first set and at one point was serving at below 70mph.
"The situation was so grim that his own support staff were shouting at him to get off the court and avoid any further escalation of the injury," reports The Daily Telegraph. "But Murray is one of the stubbornest men alive, stubborn enough to cling on to any chink of light. Amazingly, he turned things around, first by going for stone-cold winners off every stiff-legged shot, and then by gradually expanding the range of his movement as those recalcitrant muscles warmed up."
The crowd certainly appreciated his efforts, but not everyone was impressed. Eurosport summariser Virginia Wade sniffed: "I have more sympathy for the other guy as, honestly, you cannot play against someone who is being a drama queen." She followed that up by claiming that Murray "feels so sorry for himself he has no control over the fact he is not really acting in an adult way".
When confronted with the comments, Murray performed his second miracle of the day and kept his cool, although The Guardian noted that he was "he was red-lining just this side of apoplexy". He described Wade's remarks as "quite disappointing... You have people like that who always have to come out and say something controversial when, really, they should be supportive or maybe ask me a question first before commenting on it.
"I've known her since I was a really young kid. She used to do coaching stuff with my mum since I was a really young child. She has no idea what I was feeling on the court."
She may have been crossed off the Murray Christmas card list.