With one major title under his belt, men’s singles champion Andy Murray can now add another accolade to his portfolio.
Murray has today been awarded the freedom of the borough of Merton by Merton Council leader Stephen Alambritis and mayor Councillor Agatha Akyigyina.
He said: “It’s an honour to receive the Freedom of Merton.
“Everyone knows how much this tennis tournament means to me, so I’m delighted and I’d like to thank the councillors and everyone involved for granting me this.
“I can’t wait for the tournament to start this year, fingers crossed I can defend my title.”
Days before he begins defending his 2013 Wimbledon tennis championships title next week, Coun Akyigyina presented Murray with a certificate and seal, formally granting him honorary freeman status at a special presentation hosted by the All England Lawn Tennis Club.
Coun Akyigyina said: “We can all remember back to summer 2013 when the whole of Merton and the rest of the country got behind Andy Murray as he claimed the famous Wimbledon trophy for the country, and it has given me great pleasure in granting him freedom of Merton.
“He has done so much for tennis as a sport and has brought significant reputational benefits to Merton as a great place to visit and a place where it’s good to work and live.”
It was voted by councillors to award Murray the honour in April and it was officially presented to him on Friday, June 20.
Leader of the council Councillor Stephen Alambritis said: “I am proud to be leader of the borough which is home to the most famous tennis tournament in the world and it is with great delight that we are here today to make this presentation.
“Through winning Wimbledon and being an outstanding and dedicated sportsman, Andy Murray not only does much for the reputation of tennis in the UK, but also for Merton as the host borough.”
The title of honorary freedom of the borough is awarded to "persons of distinction" who have "rendered eminent services" to the borough.