(AP) NEW YORK - His considerable lead, and a chance at history, slipping away, Andy Murray dug deep for stamina and mental strength, outlasting Novak Djokovic in a thrilling five-set U.S. Open final Monday.
It had been 76 years since a British man won a Grand Slam singles championship and, at least as far as Murray was concerned, it was well worth the wait.
Ending a nation's long drought, and snapping his own four-final skid in majors, Murray finally pulled through with everything at stake on a Grand Slam stage, shrugging off defending champion Djokovic's comeback bid to win 7-6 (10), 7-5, 2-6, 3-6, 6-2.
"Novak is so, so strong. He fights until the end in every single match," Murray said. "I don't know how I managed to come through in the end."
Yes, Murray already showed he could come up big by winning the gold medal in front of a home crowd at the London Olympics last month. But this was different. This was a Grand Slam tournament, the standard universally used to measure tennis greatness - and the 287th since Britain's Fred Perry won the 1936 U.S. Championships, as the event was known back then.