Cameron Norrie's father says watching final point 'was like torture'

‘It was like torture!’ Cameron Norrie’s father says watching his son’s thrilling five-set victory in Wimbledon quarter final was ‘extremely stressful’

  • David Norrie made comments after son Cameron won Wimbledon quarter final
  • British No.1 beat Belgium star David Goffin 3-2 on sets on Court One yesterday
  • But the win came after tense match in which Norrie held nerve to win a tie-break
  • Norrie faces Wimbledon top seed Novak Djokovic in semi-finals later this week

Cameron Norrie’s father has described watching the final point of his son’s thrilling Wimbledon quarter-final victory as ‘like torture’ – but says he believes his son is handling the pressure well.

The British tennis ace twice came from a set down to seal a dramatic victory over Belgium’s David Goffin in the quarter-finals yesterday.

The ninth seed – who is Britain’s only remaining singles competitor in this year’s tournament – sealed a 3-6, 7-5, 2-6, 6-3, 7-5 victory on a raucous Court One, with his parents, his sister and his girlfriend watching on.

Norrie, who was also being cheered on by a vocal William and Kate, became only the fourth British man in the Open era to reach the last four at the All England Club.

The 26-year-old will now face top seed Novak Djokovic in the semi-final later this week, in what will undoubtedly the biggest tests of his career so far.

But his father David Norrie, a microbiologist originally from Glasgow, said he struggled to watch the final points of his son’s match on Tuesday.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme on Wednesday morning, Mr Norrie, who flew over with wife Helen from their home in New Zealand to watch his son play in the prestigious tournament, said: ‘The last few points I was going to say, torture but in some ways it was a wonderful experience but it was hard to watch I must say’.

Cameron Norrie’s father said watching his son’s final game in the Wimbledon quarter-final was ‘torture’

Cameron has kept hopes alive of a third home win in the Wimbledon men’s singles in a decade with a dramatic five-set victory over Belgium’s David Goffin in the quarter-finals on Tuesday.

The ninth seed – who is Britain’s only remaining singles competitor in this year’s tournament – sealed a 3-6, 7-5, 2-6, 6-3, 7-5 victory on a raucous Court One, with his mother (pictured left) , his sister (pictured right) and his girlfriend (pictured right) watching on

Kate and William hail ‘brilliant’ Cameron Norrie after quarter-final triumph 

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have hailed Cameron Norrie as ‘brilliant’ after his quarter-final triumph at Wimbledon.

William and Kate, who is patron of the All England Club, cheered on the British player from the stands at No 1 Court on Tuesday as he beat Belgium’s David Goffin in a dramatic five-set quarter-finals match.

The duke and duchess tweeted a picture of the 26-year-old pumping his fist on the court, with the caption: ‘What a match! Just brilliant @cam_norrie’.

They later added: “What a day of tennis! Fantastic to be back @Wimbledon today and wonderful to see @Cam_Norrie flying the flag in the singles!”

The ninth seed twice recovered from a set down to claim a 3-6 7-5 2-6 6-3 7-5 victory on a raucous No 1 Court and become only the fourth British man in the Open era to reach the last four at the All England Club.

Mr Norrie said as someone who plays tennis himself, he’s aware of the ‘ups and downs’, adding that while tennis is a ‘wonderful game’ it can also be ‘extremely stressful’.

He said: ‘I think what I have gained over the years is to be able to realise that matches that seem to be slipping away can sometimes change quite quickly and I think that’s what happened last night.’

Asked about how his son will cope with the added pressure of media attention, Mr Norrie said: ‘I think he’s doing fine.

‘As anyone who watched the match last night could see the crowd actually lifted him really well when he was down two sets to one so he seems to be coping admirably.’

On his son’s psychological preparation, Mr Norrie said his son has an ‘overall goal to be the best tennis player he can be’ and is ‘pretty well grounded’.

He said: ‘I think there’s an overall goal to be the best tennis player he can be and therefore, he doesn’t want to limited by saying: ‘Ah I’ll reach Number 10, I’ll reach Number eight’.

‘And I think obviously for each of match there’s a plan depending on who he’s playing so he seems to be pretty well grounded.

‘And I suppose you have to be playing a sport like tennis.’

On what advised he will give his son ahead of the semi-final, Mr Norrie said he’ll tell the 26-year-old to ’embrace the moment’.

He said: ‘I’m not just going try and ask him and tell him if he can enjoy the moment because it’s not that often you get to the semi-final of a grand slam no matter what level you play.

‘So he must just embrace the moment and try and use the crowd as well as he did last night, I guess.’

Norrie’s father and mother Helen travelled over from their home in New Zealand to watch their son this summer.

Cameron Norrie in action during his Gentlemen’s Singles quarter-final match against David Goffin

Norrie, who was also being cheered on by a vocal William and Kate (pictured), became only the fourth British man in the Open era to reach the last four at the All England Club

Louise Jacobi and Helen Norrie celebrate Cameron Norrie winning his quarter final match at Wimbledon

In his post-match interview on Tuesday, the 26-year-old spoke about the matches being ‘stressful’ for his parents to watch.

He said: ‘I think every match that I’ve won this week my mum has cried.

‘The matches are getting bigger and the moments are getting more special. I think they’re just super happy for me that I’m doing something that I love, and it’s just a bonus that I’m winning. I think it was probably pretty stressful for them today.

‘They came over after the match when I was on the bike and both gave me a big hug, and my sister too. 

‘Very cool to have them here watching. Obviously very rare for them to be here, especially over the last couple of years.

‘To see me playing at the level that I have been and to get some wins and to experience moments like that is exactly why they came.’

The last Brit standing in Wimbledon! How Cameron Norrie, 26, became a tennis champion despite a moped crash that almost scuppered his career… and why he doesn’t own a car (even though he’s worth £3million)

By Inderdeep Baines for the Daily Mail 

He appeared calm, Cameron Norrie has the full weight of the nation’s hopes on his shoulders.

The last Briton standing in the championship will face top seed Novak Djokovic in his first ever semi-final appearance at SW19.

And while the 26-year-old British hopeful looked relaxed as he cycled to the All England Club for practice yesterday ahead of his quarter-final match against Belgium David Goffin, he said: ‘It’s always going to be a lot of pressure and a lot of people watching what’s going on.

‘There are a lot of emotions right now, but the tournament’s still going on. So, not satisfied yet and want to keep pushing for more.’

He enjoyed the biggest win of his career on Sunday when he beat American Tommy Paul in straight sets to the delight of the crowd and became the first British man to reach the quarter finals since Sir Andy Murray in 2017.

Relaxed: Cameron Norrie on his bike today ahead of his Wimbledon quarter final tomorrow

Born to British parents in Johannesburg, he first started playing tennis aged four with a cut-down squash racket on an ‘imaginary court’ next to his home.

His mother Helen, 59, a biochemist from Cardiff, said: ‘He wanted to play all the time.’ When he was still a child, the family left South Africa and moved to Auckland, where his mother and Glasgow-born father David – also a biochemist – still live.

They noticed their left-handed son had talent and he went into a coaching programme, reaching the top 10 junior ranking worldwide.

Cameron Norries’s girlfriend Louise Jacobi celebrates his straight sets win on no1 court at the Wimbledon Championship 2022

He eventually switched allegiance to his parents’ homeland and when he was 16 he came alone to the LTA’s national training centre in Roehampton, London.

After three years, he won a scholarship to go Texas Christian College in Fort Worth, Texas, studying sociology alongside his tennis.

But in 2016, a night out at a bar ended with six stitches in his chin after he crashed a moped.

He was axed from the team to play in a second-tier ATP Challenger tournament and was also threatened with expulsion.

This week he described the moment as a ‘turning point’, saying: ‘The coaches kicked me into gear and I was more professional after that. I grew up a lot.’

He went on to become the No 1 ranked US college player before turning professional in 2017.

He made his debut for Britain’s Davis Cup team the next year and in January 2019 he reached his first ATP final. Despite being established in the top 100 singles ranking, however, Norrie was still flying below the radar.

But the suspension of international tours during the pandemic offered him a unique opportunity to put in plenty of hard work.

During three months of seclusion – without the company of his new girlfriend, US textiles consultant Louise Jacobi – the rising star returned to the game with a new sense of purpose.

His family say Miss Jacobi, who has been by side throughout the championships, has also had a positive impact on him. She admitted she was so new to tennis when she met Norrie that she barely knew the rules.

Cam’s mother Helen said he want to play ‘all the time’ when he was younger

His parents have warmed to the New Yorker and joined them in his player’s box today.

His mother said: ‘She has a calm about her. I think she’s been good for him and they are able to talk about other things away from the court. Cameron is a bright boy and you have got to have other interests in life otherwise you would go mad.’

The British No 1 spent an hour on the practice courts at SW19 today after cycling the 10 minutes to the grounds.

Despite being worth around £3million, he said he does not have a car and would rather avoid the traffic by cycling. He told ITV last night it has been great to spend time with his parents, who were unable to leave New Zealand during the pandemic.

But he added that Sunday’s triumph ‘was probably pretty stressful for them’.

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