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Ball in Murray's court over city freedom date

The Provost of Stirling has been sent hundreds of letters and emails asking when Andy Murray will be receiving the Freedom of the City, amid doubts it will happen before Christmas given the sportsman's schedule.

Provost Mike Robbins confirmed he had been in discussions over a date for the ceremony but said "the ball is in Andy's court" as to when he wants to receive the accolade.

The plan to give Murray the freedom of Stirling, which is close to his home town of Dunblane, was called for when the tennis ace won a gold medal at this year's Olympic Games.

Since then he has gone on to win the US Open, the first British male to win a grand slam in 76 years.

The 25-year-old would become only the third individual to receive Stirling's highest civic honour, after Lt Col Frank Saunders, Scotland's oldest war veteran, and the late cricketing legend Irwin Iffla. The Royal Regiment of Scotland and 43 (Fighter) Squadron have also been awarded Freeman status.

Freemen have the right to carry arms within the royal burgh, march through the city, and graze cattle in Stirling's Kings Park.

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