For the first time in 30 years, Queen Elizabeth is planning to attend matches at Wimbledon this week. With players previously required to bow or curtsy when in the presence of the Queen, the appearance of the English Monarchy has apparently led to a dilemma for the U.K.’s top player and tournament fourth-seed Andy Murray.
Murray, who is Scottish, is from a country that for centuries fought England for its independence and continues to celebrate many of its customs and traditions separately from England.
So it isn’t as automatic for Murray to bow to an English King or Queen as you might think. Add on Murray’s first blush reaction to the British press about the prospect and a bit of a panic set in across the pond.
Murray to the LONDON TELEGRAPH on meeting the Queen:
“It should be personal preference.
“I’ll have to wait and see. I’ll have a chat with the guys. I don’t want to be bowing and the person I’m playing with walk straight past or the other way around.
“You obviously need to have an agreement before you go on.
“I’ll have to speak to the organisers about it.”
While the significance of the English Monarchy has certainly diminished in past decades in the U.K., Murray was met with enough local criticism immediately following his frank comments that he quickly backed down from his initial stance.
Murray Tweeted earlier today: “Few stories about me not bowing to the Queen if I play in front of her. Not the case, would be an honour and privilege, of course I’ll bow.”
Murray’s about-face is proof that oldsters are still sufficiently running Mother Country.
Though it is a bit ironic the Queen picked 2010 to return to the All England Club, considering zero Englishmen are represented in the draw. First time that’s happened in 133 years - when the English Royalty wielded considerably more influence.