View Full Version : Mandiemoo at the Davis Cup vs Hungary in Glasgow 16th - 18th September 2011

12-10-2011, 18:41
Day 1 - Friday
I left Mandiemoo towers at 06:50 for the long journey (did I mention it was 276 miles each way?) to Glasgow. I had the full mix of weather along the way & made 2 short stops to spend pennies!

Repeated attempts to get the Sat-Nav on the phone working failed so I followed the signs to Braehead Arena. I remembered that the Travelodge was near xcape so made my way there & was relived/excited/happy to spot the Travelodge building in the distance.

I parked up, let reception know I had arrived (& tell them no, I didn't want to spend 10 checking in early - they'd had enough money off me for the room!) & hot-footed it over to the shopping centre. It was about 12:45 so I dived into Primark for a white long-sleeved Tshirt & impulsely purchased a headband with 2 pink hearts on it - well, I figured no-one knows me here so why not?!.

Nipped into the toliets to change into my 'Team Murray' T-shirt then headed to Costa Coffee to find Sally. As promised, she was seated outside, along with James4578. Quick chat, got my tickets then went to boots to get a sandwich as we didnt know how long the matches would take. Sent a quick text to Hfwardhouse who I had been chatting with then made my way into the arena.

Found my seat & met PatMoren. Some of the other Forumites were waiting on the opposite side of the arena where the players entrance was. Hfw(ardhouse), Minnie98 & Tina arrived - it was lovely to finally meet Hfw after all her kind messages!. No-one was sure whether Andy would come out before play started.

I decided to head over to the other side of the arena where the other members were stalking, sorry, waiting for Andy & the reat of the team for autographs/photos. Supergran, Kels & Jambon had prime position on the front row. I introduced myself, had a little chat, looked up & there he was. Andy Murray. No more than a few metres in front of me. My first glimpse of him in the flesh. Pushed thoughts of leaping the barrier a la Colin Jackson to the back of my mind as it woudn't look good for the forum if I did!
It was a treat to watch him warm up. Taller & more muscular (is that a word?!) than I imagined, he was hitting lots of different shots with relish. He redid the grip on his raquet at one point, winding the blue tape round. A crowd had gathered by now & it looked to me as though Andy was a little reluctant to come off. He eventually came over & signed a few (including Minnie's - yay!) & Supergran used her charms (& school teacher voice lol!) to get a photo with Andy. He was soon gone, saying he would sign later. But wow, my hero in the flesh already & I had only been in Glasgow a few hours - what a fab weekend it was turning into!

We made our way back to our seats & more forumites had arrived including Pabbers, Linda & Lankster to name a few. It was time for the entertainment to begin. The Red Hot Chilli Pipers gave a fantastic performance & got us in the mood. We were seated directly opposite the Stirling University crew who were 'oiled' & ready to go - sponsered by Carling or similar!

The Hungary team came out & got a warm reception from us all. Then Team GB with a hero's welcome for Andy. A rousing rendition of the National Anthem followed before we sat down to watch the first match. I was a little shocked at how bright the lighting was but of course it is indoor so almost 'floodlit' tennis if you like. The atmosphere was good & we were in prime position.

James Ward vs Attila Balazs
Much of the detail of the actual match is lost to me in a haze of cheering & enjoying the spectacle of live tennis for the very first time. I had a great time joining in with all the cheering & playing along with the Stirling Uni crowd (every time you looked across at them, one of their number was stood at the top of the stairs with more beer!). We gave a very good account of ourselves in the cheering stakes & James needed all the help he could get when he got cramp & had to disappear off to be sick! But he eventually emerged victorious after 4 sets. Honourable mention must go to Sally's amazing chocolate brownies - yum!

A little treat here with Judy Murray leading a Mini-tennis demonstration. She had some help from some of the members of the Davis cup team including Ross & Colin. Plenty of laughs & some lovely kids. Had a text to say I had been spotted on TV cheering wildly & sporting 2 pink hearts on my head - oh dear, all my street cred gone!

Andy Murray vs Sebo Kiss
So it was finally time for me to see Andy play live just a few metres away from me. Cue butterflies! It has to be said he looked a little tired but he played very well for the first 2 sets. You really don't get just how hard he hits the ball on TV & how fast he chases down the balls. I couldnt tell you much about Kiss's game as I only had eyes for Andy! The 3rd set was a scrappier affair, going to a tie-break which took me by surprise. Andy threw himself into the tie-break, determined not to go to another set. He was chasing down balls, serving well & his class told as he secured the win. Plenty of cheers throughout, especially at the end.

Tired but happy, it was almost 9pm! I headed over to the Travelodge to check-in & freshen up. I went back to Xscape & the Harvester restaurant where many of the forumites were tucking into their tea. I gatecrashed Hfw's table & ordered a garlic bread as I was past eating. Andy's Dad was also having his tea in the Harvester with a group of others, no doubt proud of his son & pleased to be watching him play in Scotland.
It was a sleepy Mandiemoo who crawled into bed at 10:15pm. Decided to have a quck look at the LTA website on the mobile & was astounded to see a picture of myself & Hfw on the Homepage!

What a first day!


Any errors (spelling, grammatical) are entirely the fault of someone else.

12-10-2011, 18:41
Day 2 Saturday

A hot cuppa & hot shower started the second day of my adventure!

Walked across to Weatherspoons at about 9.30am in search of breakfast. Saw Lankster & Michelle who were just finishing their breakfast. Had a nice chat with them before they left in a Taxi for Brodie Park to see Judy open the newly refurbished courts. I ordered a fry-up breakfast (well, I'm on holiday!) with a coffee to fuel me for the day - it was delicious!

Enjoyed a mooch around the shops (without a buggy - bliss lol!) before having a rest at Costa Coffee with Cosmo magazine. Spotted Jambon & Kels so wandered over for a chat. I went with them to queue for the doors to open & after a little wait, we were in! Followed these seasoned autograph-hunters straight down to the players entrance area. Others had the same idea but we were on the front row.

Andy & James were sat next to the umpire's chair on court while Colin & Ross warmed up. After a while, James came off court & came over to the growing crowd, having pictures taken & signing autographs, including one for me! I told him 'Well done for yesterday' to which he said 'Thanks'

Colin & Ross completed their warm up & Andy went on court to hit some balls. Ross disappeared suddenly (I had strong suspicions Hfw was involved.....) but Colin came over to us. He had his picture taken & signed & again, one for me.

We watch Andy hitting with other members of the DC team. He finished up & came straight over, all of a sudden he was stood in front of me signing my book! I was speechless, managing to croak 'Thank You' (oh, how original) as he carried on up the line. How I wished I had planned it better & asked for a photo! There were some children who asked him to have his picture taken with their Teddy bear which was very sweet. A heart-stopping moment came when he had finished signing & started to walk back towards the exit - he tripped over a TV cable! Jambon stuck his arm out to catch the World number 4 Tennis player but Andy managed to recover himself but it could have been a nasty fall!

Time to go to our seats. More chat & laughs, waving to the Stirling Uni crew who seemed to have recovered okay from the previous days exploits.

Lights down & on come the Red Hot Chilli Pipers! They really do get you in the mood for cheering! We gave the both teams a warm reception, probably warmer for Team GB who had a 2-0 lead going into the doubles.

I enjoyed the Doubles immensly. It is such a shame it doesn't get more TV coverage because the fast pace would appeal to people who aren't necessarily big Tennis fans. It is exciting - the points are shorter & you are absorbed into it. Ross & Colin played very well, they make an excellent team & deserve all the success they have had. We were treated to a Bryan Bros 'chest-bump' which raised lots of laughs. The Stirling Uni crew were again in fine voice & got some successful Mexican waves going round the arena.

Most importantly though, the Dubs win means victory for Team GB - Hooray!

Plans were made to meet at 7pm to eat for those who wanted to. The great thing about being with the forum group was that you could dip in & out as you wished - although I had travelled on my own, I was never short of company & was made to feel very welcome. I headed back to my room to rest my vocal chords & have a long soak in the bath.

We met up in Xscape's restaurant area. It was very busy with it being Saturday night. The Frankie & Bennies restaurant was able to accommodate us after a bit of a wait but in 2 groups. My table of 8 was Hfw, Minnie98, Tina, Caro, Supergran, PatMoren & Jeannie13. I have to say that Supergran flirted shamelessly with the waiters (she assures me Mr Supergran doesn't mind!), making poor Francisco blush! Great conversation, great food, lots of laughs & a great time had by all! ( Thanks to the lady who gave us a discount voucher - I'm embarrased to say I've forgotten her name, think it begins with J ?)

We continued our lovely evening back at the bar of the Travelodge. It was discovered that they had run out of White wine which briefly threatened to escalate into an international incident. Luckily, Rose was available & people were able to bring their own white wine down from their rooms. Cathy was showing off her picture with Andy (inside, I was insanely jealous!) Had more lovely chat with Jeannie13, Caro, Supergran & others, putting the world to rights & getting slightly squiffy! Proposed a toast to Sally for all her hard work.

As the clock neared midnight, fearful of pumpkins, I retired to my bed with a large bottle of water!

Any errors of any kind are entirely nobody's fault

12-10-2011, 18:42
Day 3 Sunday
Woke at 6am, carefully opened one eye to check for signs of hangover but that huge bottle of water did its job - no hangover for me! (Can't be too careful these days, I don't drink very often so have a low tolerance level!). Lounged about in my room before springing into action to shower, dress & pack - it was the final day!

A rumbling stomach propelled me to Weatherspoons for breakfast just before 9am. Again, I opted for the fry-up & a large orange juice. I was just tucking in when Supergran came in. She joined me & we had a lovely chat about.... well, about everything!.

Time was flying, it was now after 10am so I bid Supergran goodbye & headed back to the Travelodge to check out. I got in my car & drove round to Sainsburys to fuel up for the journey home (276 miles, you know). I parked up at the shopping centre in anticipation of a speedier exit in the afternoon. I needed to leave before 3pm in order to relive my neighbours who were the final link in a complicated childcare arrangement for Sunday as Mr Mandiemoo had to work.

Of course, the matches were effectively dead rubbers so we couldn't be certain Andy would play, given his exploits in the US & the fact that the Tennis calendar is packed & the timing of the Davis cup ties.... but here is not the place to discuss all that!

I entered the arena just after 11am &, as is now customary, made my way down to the players entrance. I was not on the front row today but I had gotten 3 autographs (including Andy's) so I wasnt too concerned. Supergran, Jambon & others had secured front row berths.
Ross appeared & took time to sign for all who wanted, including me so I got 4/4 - result!

Andy was going to play & was warming up on court. he again looked tired but keen not to let us down. He again signed some autographs which lead to a bit of a crush as people pushed forward!

Caro & Supergran suggested we might like to partake of liquid refreshment prior to the game so the three of us ambled to the bar, only to find it didn't open til 12.30pm! We killed time looking at the stalls & watching the ball kids whack tennis balls into the river.

The clock struck 12.30pm & 3 cool lagers were ours! Linda came over for a chat, looking a little under the weather. She wasnt feeling too good unfortunately. We then spotted none other than the Stirling Uni crew at the bar! They had really up the stakes with their outfits, dressing as what looked to be nursery rhyme characters! Caro took a fab picture of Supergran with them. They are a friendly lot & are always singing along to the music played at changeovers!

We headed inside to take up our positions. I was seated next to Supergran so would have to match her, cheer for cheer! The annoucer welcomed us all in & mentioned the 'Andy Murray Fan Forum' to huge cheers, just in case people wondered who he was referring to. I believe a small birdie (named Supergran) had a word in his ear.

Gyorgy Balazs was Andy's opponent & was welcomed onto court. I could see bagpipes behind the curtains where the players emerge from & thought it must be a lost Red Hot Chilli Piper. But none of us were prepared for what happened next. Andy was lead onto the court by the Red Hot Chilli Pipers playing 'Flower of Scotland' (I get goosebumps thinking about it even now!) It was an emotionally charged moment. The crowd were singing along & so was Andy. A magical moment indeed.

It was another good match with the amazingly-quiffed Gyorgy giving a good account of himself. There was a rarely-seen moment in the ninth game (I think) of the first set when Andy overuled the umpire in calling a ball from Gyorgy in & conceding the point. The first set was settled in a tie-break where it was all level at 3-3 before Andy moved up a gear to win 7-3

The second set went on serve to 3-3 before Andy found his rhythm to win 6-3 to massive cheers. Andy could very easily not have played as it was obvious to those of us who watch him regularly that he was tired. On a normal day, he would have probably won these matches easily.
Colin Fleming was playing the final match as James was not fit to play. As much as I wanted to stay, it was time to head off south (276 miles, did I tell you that) & make my way home. Quick goodbyes followed by a big queue to get out of the arena.

I arrived home at 8.30pm having had a fabulous weekend of Tennis & Fun!

Any errors of any type are entirely your fault.

I really hope to be able to go to the DC again. Unfortunately, the dates for next year are not a good fit for Mr Mandiemoo's work - February is out, April looks dodgy at best but I digress, what I wanted to say was if anyone out there is wondering whether to go, worried about going alone, don't be! It's a great way to see live tennis in good company & cheer on Team GB. It's infectious!

12-10-2011, 18:53
Thanks Mandiemoo - I'd been thinking that no-one had posted a blog yet! And also that I really must get round to sorting out my photos! Looking forward to the rest of your blog :clap::clap::clap:

12-10-2011, 19:21
:yahoo: :yahoo:

What a fabulous start - laugh out loud stuff! You really threw yourself into the spirit of the whole occasion - loads of fun and loads of happy memories! Can't wait for more :big grin:

12-10-2011, 19:39
Brilliant Mandiemoo! :thumbup:

Well written & witty, and really gave me a feel for being there. Your enthusiasm for watching Andy play live for the first time came across really strongly - I thoroughly enjoyed reading that - well done :clap:

Btw I'm glad you said that was you with Jane in the photo - we saw the same shot when we were watching this on TV and wondered who it was - now we know :big grin:

I'm really glad you enjoyed yourself - bring on more blog!!

12-10-2011, 19:47
Loved your blog, MM--I really enjoyed meeting you--I found your enthusiasm so infectious.:cheer::dance::jitterbug:

12-10-2011, 20:13
Yay, a tennis blog! Great start Mandiemoo :)

And shameless plug - if anyone is interested in my latest Disney adventure there is a link to my blog in my signature ;)

12-10-2011, 20:22
Ooh that's fabulous MM! Love the last line. :lol: I think this is the first blog. :shocked: Looking forward to the rest.

12-10-2011, 20:38
Thank you for all your very kind comments. I am a first timer at blog writing so nice to see it is being enjoyed. I have just posted Saturday's installment.

12-10-2011, 20:43
Thoroughly enjoying your blog Mandiemoo! Thanks for doing it.:thanks:

12-10-2011, 20:47
Great blog Mandiemoo, :):) Hope there will be more blogs to come from others.:)

12-10-2011, 21:08
Great blog mandiemoo :clap::clap: Reminds me of a fun weekend and it was great to meet you. Jeannie is right, your enthusiam is infectious :excited:

12-10-2011, 21:23
Fabulous Madiemoo, look forward to hearing more!

12-10-2011, 21:36
The final part is up. Thanks again for all the kind comments.

It was a great weekend, wish every weekend was like that!

12-10-2011, 21:41
brilliant blog Mandiemoo!! - thanks for taking the time to write your blog and share this -

12-10-2011, 22:18
Brilliant blog, Mandiemoo! It almost felt like being there. :thumbup:

12-10-2011, 22:44
Absolutely brilliant Mandi..well written with so much detail and humour. I loved it and like Jane laughed out loud. Thanks for bringing back happy memories!!

12-10-2011, 22:57
Awesome blog! Thank you! Glad you got to watch Andy play and win for the first (and second) time! :)

12-10-2011, 23:09
Thanks for that MM, it brought back so many memories of a brilliant weekend.

13-10-2011, 12:01
Brilliant Mandiemoo, enjoyed that! :thumbup:

Golden Lady
13-10-2011, 12:18
Mandiemoo, that was a fabulous read! Thank you so much for sharing :flowers:

13-10-2011, 14:41
Thanks Mandiemoo, brought it all back. We has such a fabulous weekend. Hope you make it again sometime.

13-10-2011, 16:01
Colin & Ross completed their warm up & Andy went on court to hit some balls. Ross disappeared suddenly (I had strong suspicions Hfw was involved.....)

Who? Me? Never :shamed: :shamed: .... I should be so lucky ;) :halo: :angel:

I don't drink very often so have a low tolerance level!

Yes, but boy did you make up for it on Saturday night ;) :wino: :wino: :rofl:

13-10-2011, 18:39
Thanks so much for your super blog. :clap: It brought back great memories of a super weekend. :wino:
They are all very friendly & I know I'm looking forward to the next one.
Was it 276 miles each way? :rolling::rolling:

13-10-2011, 19:23
Thank you so much for all your lovely comments & appreciation. I have a warm fuzzy feeling reading them all!

Was it 276 miles each way? :rolling::rolling: Yes, it really was but how did you know??

My pictures are not very good so if anyone has any pictures of the event & indeed of the AMFF group, it would be lovely to see them.

13-10-2011, 19:53
Thank you so much for all your lovely comments & appreciation. I have a warm fuzzy feeling reading them all!

Yes, it really was but how did you know??

My pictures are not very good so if anyone has any pictures of the event & indeed of the AMFF group, it would be lovely to see them.

A little bird must have told me it was 276 miles!!:lightbulb:

13-10-2011, 20:38
Lovely blog, thanks very much Mandiemoo! :clap: :clap: :clap:

13-10-2011, 20:52
A little bird must have told me it was 276 miles!!:lightbulb: Well, how many little birds did you speak to? Mandi, I have something to share: Sunday when Andy seemed to be struggling you put your head on my shoulder and said you were worried. I said to you that including that match I had watched Andy live 7 times and he had never lost so told you not to worry. And you didn't and he won!!!

13-10-2011, 22:11
Great stuff MM!

13-10-2011, 22:42
Awesome blog. Loved it. :thumbup: :clap: :cheer:

14-10-2011, 16:29
Thanks Mandiemoo, that was most interesting and entertaining.

14-10-2011, 19:37
If anyone hasn't seen it or would like to relive it, here is a video of Andy being led on by the Red Hot Chilli Pipers. It was a wonderful moment, very special to share.


14-10-2011, 21:15
Brilliant - thanks Mandiemoo! :thumbup: