Scotland has a Grand Slam tennis champion to speak of this morning after Andy Murray banished all those long years of hurt to claim the US Open title in front of watching knights of the realm Sir Alex Ferguson and Sir Sean Connery.
This has been a crowded summer for sporting success but the 7-6 (12-10), 7-5, 2-6, 3-6, 6-2 scoreline which the 25-year-old from Dunblane compiled in a gruelling four hours 54 minutes on court against the reigning US Open champion Novak Djokovic at Flushing Meadows last night can be placed alongside or above any other sporting achievement this small country of ours has generated.
It was the joint longest US Open final in history and leaves the dusty old annals of wider British tennis in need of a comprehensive rewrite.
No fewer than 287 Grand Slams, after all, had come and gone since Fred Perry won his last major, the 1936 US Open.
Donald Trump also had a ringside seat as the Scot outlasted the Serb, a man who hadn't lost a match at one of the hard court slams for exactly two years.
The property magnate and occasional Aberdeenshire hotelier would have savoured the way the apprentice finally became the master, as would the Scot's coach Ivan Lendl, as the British no. 1 followed in his footsteps to win his maiden major title after damaging losses in the previous four finals.
The received wisdom was that the longer this went on the more it would favour Djokovic, but the Scot had the benefit of an extra 24 hours rest and kept his trump card up his sleeve until the final set.
"It was incredible tough conditions and Novak is such a tough competitor," he said afterwards. "I don't know how I came through in the end."
This was Scotland versus Serbia the rematch and, while Saturday's soccer encounter had ended in a stalemate, this was the most famous of victories.
The players had emerged to a half-empty Arthur Ashe arena, the match played out amid a strong breeze in the New York area, notably blowing from the opposite end as it did on Saturday when Murray faced Tomas Berdych.
This was a hopeful sign, considering the Scot had dealt much these conditions far better than Djokovic had in his opening set against David Ferrer on Saturday.
The conditions immediately discomforted Djokovic, who saw his service broken to love courtesy of a raft of unforced errors and a forehand which blew long on game point.
It had been a whirlwind start from Murray but before long he too was blown off course when he had to serve from that end, his break promptly surrendered to 30.
Murray, the older man by just seven days, once again would be a break to the good but unable to capitalise, a sign of the Serb's resources coming when he prevailed in a 54-shot rally.
Neither man had lost a tie-break thus far in the tournament, but something had to give in a breaker which would become the longest ever in a US Open final.
The Serb had his nose in front early on, but before long Murray had given himself multiple set points. A lesser man, perhaps
a younger man, might have collapsed after seeing five of go a begging, at least two of which were errors.
But like his mentor Lendl, Murray shrugged them off and kept grinding more chances out. He finally had his man when, after one disputed let call on his first serve, another booming one caused the Serb's forehand return to fly long.
The set had lasted one hour 27 minutes, just shy of a football match, and prompted as loud and guttural a cheer from the New York crowd as if the point had been played at Mount Florida rather than Flushing Meadows.
For a while it seemed like the second set might offer some respite, Murray breaking to love in the opening game of the set to leave the Serb remonstrating at his corner, then promptly doubling his advantage for 4-0.
Djokovic came roaring back for 4-1 and then 4-3 but the Scot rediscovered his poise in the nick of time. A typical Murray defensive point forced the Serb to play one smash more than he wanted to and he duly put it wide to set up two set points. The Scot only needed one, an agonising Hawk-Eye challenge confirming that another Djokovic forehand had flown into the tramlines.
Murray's level had to drop eventually, and it did. He had three break points to save in his first service game of the third set, but the Serb finally broke through for a 2-1 advantage. A second break came for 5-2, on the back of an expert backhand Djokovic return, and from 0-30 the Serb came through to take us into a fourth.
After a change of shoes, the man from Belgrade's bravery lasted into this set, and some good work at the net saw him break for a 1-0 advantage.
Murray was complaining of tired legs but Djokovic was feeling it too, diving about behind the baseline like a goalkeeper as he held for 6-3 to take us into a decider.
By the end, the Scot had pretty much dismantled him. Murray conjured three service breaks to one, forcing the Serb to call for the trainer, complaining of an adductor muscle problem as the Scot prepared to serve for the tournament.
Murray ignored such matters, and the title was his when one last Djokovic forehand went long.
The Scot picks up 1.9m dollars in the process and earned ever penny last night. Winning his first major title, however, was priceless.
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