The day Andy Murray shocked Eastbourne

Eastbourne are used to hosting the world’s best tennis players but Andy Murray’s appearance in 2008 certainly raised a few eyebrows.

The County Cup has been a regular fixture in the calender at Devonshire Park for many years but never before or since has it included a player of Murray’s stature.

The North of Scotland were due to face the might of Hertfordshire and Murray, who reached the Wimbledon semi-finals that year, arrived out of the blue to help out.

The man from Dunblane and then world number-three teamed-up with his brother Jamie.

He went from performing in the Wimbledon semi-final before a packed Centre Court and millions on television to turning out before a few diehards on the outside courts of Devonshire Park.

There were no linespeople or an umpire when he tackled brothers Ed and David Corrie, the former a student in America and the latter an investment manager, in his first match.

Unsurprisingly he won all of his three matches but that was not enough to stop North of Scotland losing the tie 5-4.

Speaking after his shock appearance, Murray explained, “They asked me if I had any interest in playing and I just thought it would be a bit of fun.

“I know a lot of my team mates from when I was young and I usually only get to see them when I’m in Scotland, which is not very often, so it was great to catch up.”

Murray was also in Eastbourne in 2006 when he helped Jeremy Bates’ Davis Cup side beat Israel 3-2 at Devonshire Park.

His stay that year was not without controversy however, as he told the Herald Sport photographer to ‘F*** off’ as she took pictures of him during his service action.

The tennis player’s mum, Judy Murray has also taken a swipe at Eastbourne when she posted on Twitter ahead of the GB team’s second-round match against Luxembourg which was due to take place in the summer of 2011.

After Britain defeated Tunisia, Mrs Murray tweeted, “Luxemburg bt Ireland 3-1 in Dublin so its a home tie in July. Hopefully not in Eazzzzztbourne. Been there done that.”

However, her comments were in contrast to those made by Andy Murray following his tie with Israel’s Andy Ram in 2006. Murray came back from two sets down against Ram at the Devonshire Park and said he really enjoyed playing in Eastbourne.

He said, “That was the best Davis Cup crowd I have ever played in front of.”