Inverness woman Joan MacGillivray's famous tennis hat in honour of hero Sir Andy Murray set to enter Wimbledon's Lawn Tennis association museum in London
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In the eyes of ‘superfan’ Joan MacGillivray, Sir Andy Murray’s exploits with racket and ball will never be old hat.
The Inverness woman has ardently followed the three times Grand Slam-winning tennis legend all over the world.
But while her hero battles on in his career through the agonies of a hip injury, the bunnet Mrs MacGillivray has worn while
supporting him is about to be retired.
The Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Museum approached the 68-year-old former nurse to ask if the quirky headgear, a little weathered these days, could be preserved for posterity as an exhibit.
Adorned in Union Jacks, tennis balls, ribbons and the Murray name, the colourful hat has often brought Mrs MacGillivray to media attention.
Mrs MacGillivray, a leading member of the ‘Murray-nators’ group of die-hard supporters, explained: “At Wimbledon 2021, I was interviewed on TV wearing the hat.
“I was then approached by a woman who put me in touch with Adam Chadwick, who is head of the museum at Wimbledon.
“He asked me if, when I was finished with the hat, I wouldn’t mind donating it to the museum.
“I was thrilled. I will be very proud indeed to see it on display within the home of tennis.
“I planned to wear it one last time in Aberdeen for the Battle of the Brits tournament where Andy and Jamie Murray were to appear, but that’s off now.
“The hat was beginning to get a wee bit tired-looking, so I’m just happy to retire it to a good home.
“I’ll make myself a new one and, no matter when he retires, Andy’s name will always be on it.”
The older hat was first donned as Murray won Wimbledon for the first time in 2013, before a series of international tennis travels to countries including Canada, Australia, Serbia, Spain, France, Belgium, Holland and Monaco during Davis Cup action.
She stressed: “I’ve met him quite a few times – he’s so well-mannered, an absolute gentleman. His whole family is just lovely.
“For the very first photo I got with him at the Davis Cup, he was actually rushing off to get a plane to the USA but stopped and chatted away.
“He makes tennis exciting. What that man has put his body through is unbelievable.
“He’s my boy, an absolute hero to me, and always will be.
“I wouldn’t like to say I’m the world’s biggest Andy Murray fan, but I’m definitely up there!”