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In Melbourne, the Murray Mob are finally true believers

HeraldScotland blogger Gary Johnston watches the UK's number one make it three Grand Slam finals in a row

As Scots we’re used to disappointment. Some might even say we like it that way. Saves time later on.

Inside the Rod Laver Arena, you can tell which particular members of the Murray Mob are truly genuine Scots.

The ones who, like me and my posse, don’t really expect the Big Man to win.

Years ago, during the World Cup of 1982, me and a bunch of mates were at the Brazil game - famous for David Neary’s “toe-poke” goal.

After the initial euphoria of going 1-0 up, and as the Brazilians started to assert themselves, the ball went out for a throw-in near where we were sitting.

John Robertson, a slightly shambling figure compared to the near perfect Brazilian specimens, went to retrieve it, and was met with exhortations from the bears along the lines of “let’s get into them wee man”.

"Come on now boys," said Robbo in response, “This is Brazil for **** sake.”

The difference in Melbourne is Andy expects to win.

Remember, he’s playing Roger Federer, one of the true greats of the game, but it’s a measure of how good Andy is, how much self belief he’s got, that he looks not over confident or supercilious, but totally in control.

Andy breezes through the first set and Roger the Dodger is in trouble - up against it, you might say, having to pull out all the best shots he has in his locker just to survive.

A second set tie break gives Fed some respite and the doubts - amongst some of us - grow yet again. The Big Man starts to fiddle with a hamstring - or is it a quad, it’s hard to tell?

An injury or just Andy looking for a way out, the way he used to, when he appeared to blame his mum when things went wrong?

Not this time. It’s nothing. Merely a minor blip as he runs through the third set, making Fed look like an ageing gunslinger who’s best days are behind him.

For the first time in this tournament, Andy is not the favourite in the stadium, Fed is hugely popular here and he has the majority of the crowd on his side. Andy, however, is the bookies' favourite and the one all the pundits are saying should win.

Some of us are not convinced. I’m certainly not. But then I’m Scottish.

As the fourth set proceeds, even the doubters are beginning to believe, and by that I mean me. Andy is going to win this. He’s going to be in the Australian Open Final.

But suddenly, from a seemingly hopeless position, Fed turns it around and wins the set in a nerve jangling tie-break.

The fifth set. Prepare to be disappointed, Murray Mob. The tension in the stadium is unbelievable, fingernails are being chewed, fingers are being chewed.

Who’s going to be first to blink - the Scotsman or the ice cool Swiss legend of the game? You know who my money’s on, and it isn’t Andy

Which shows you what I know. Murray consolidates an early break to go 3-0 up. And from there, Fed, the great Fed, finally chucks the towel in, or at any rate, Andy takes the towel, knots it a one end and smacks Roger on the bahookie.

He’s through. The Big Man has WON! Am I dreaming or what? There are only two words for it. Un-believable.

Now for the final. Maybe it’s time to start believing.

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