Kate Livingstone: Dealing with the disappointment

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Well now we will see if Andy Murray has been paying attention to that famous quote from Rudyard Kipling above the entrance to Wimbledon’s hallowed Centre Court.

It reads:

“If you can meet with triumph and disaster

And treat those two imposters just the same”

Say no more.

Yes I’m sure he will be disappointed after his quarter-final defeat, but he’s grown up a lot since those days when he used to growl at the interviewers who asked him all these probing questions at the end of gruelling match.

I’ve been engrossed in Wimbledon this year and it never ceases to amaze me how either player manages to speak, far less string two sentences together after some pretty strenuous tennis.

Do we expect too much of our sportsmen and women?

Yes they are paid an awful lot of money ... if they win. But there are lots of them out there who are desperately trying to make the grade in a whole variety of sports.

We hear an awful lot nowadays about the failure to put enough into some grassroot sports – and I accept that there isn’t a bottomless purse – but sometimes it’s more than money that is needed.

Time is far more important, and probably even more precious,

And should we not be spending some of that time showing our would-be sports stars of the future how to handle these sort of situations?

On a lighter note, I loved the tale about the up-and-coming 18-year-old English tennis player whose dad had grounded her after finding out she had been clubbing with a much older player who, well let’s just say he appears to have a bit of a lad.

What I was left wondering was if she had accepted her ‘punishment’.

He’s definitely a brave man trying that with a daughter who is officially an adult.

However, I’m sure he would argue that he’s put a lot into helping his daughter attempt to reach her aspirations in the sport.

There is a fine line between encouraging and pushing children to strive to do well. And I’m only talking as a mum whose children only flirted with football and swimming ‘careers’ for a while.

My involvement was never to the level of Judy Murray and the like.

And if I’m honest, I’m glad. Don’t think I would have coped with allowing either of mine to go and train abroad when they were 15.

So I’m sure Andy is disappointed for now. We all are, but there’s no getting away from the fact that over the years he has made us proud.