THE symbolism is obvious. The site for the press call is Cromlix Hotel, the five-star seat of the Murray clan. And standing in front of it today are Judy Murray and Blane Dodds, the chief executive of Tennis Scotland.

At times the matriarch of Scotland’s superstar tennis family has been so exasperated by the lack of progress in building a lasting legacy from the on-court exploits of her sons Andy and Jamie that she has been tempted to go it alone, but the picture tells a story. It is time for a united front – and an acknowledgement that it is now or never when it comes to get backing from the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) and the Scottish Government to make this a reality.

While it is to be hoped both play on for years now, if any image should have focused minds that this process is ‘time critical’ it was her younger son’s press conference in Australia back in January. The 31-year-old was fighting back the tears, admitting a second hip surgery was inevitable and wondering whether he would ever play the sport again.

“Everybody knows what happened to Andy in Australia, when he gave his press conference and said he wasn’t sure if he was going to be able to play anymore,” said Judy, a former national coach. “He also spoke about legacy and the lack of investment in Scotland, the fact there were no new indoor courts in Scotland in the ten years when he was at his peak – 2006 to 2016. That got people talking again.”

After a series of discussions with Dodds, a pal from a past life playing tennis at a Glasgow club, there is agreement on a co-ordinated Scottish-centric action plan to get more people playing – and staying – in the sport. This includes expediting the painfully slow process of building a new generation of indoor courts and using Judy’s expertise to develop a workforce of coaches and parents to grow the sport. Her own Park of Keir development near Dunblane, on which work should start any time now, will double as a national workforce development centre. Ideally, all this talent development in time feeds into the new national academy in Stirling, one of just two such facilities UK wide.

“The time is now,” said Judy. “People have been talking about legacy for a long time – I certainly have – because my concern was always that the boys would finish playing and we wouldn’t have anything to show for it. That was why, five years ago, when I didn’t see anybody doing anything to capitalise on the excitement, the profile, the buzz, I started looking for a base for a tennis centre and also my Tennis on the Road programme to facilitate a workforce build et cetera.

“Blane has been in post for just over a year, but I’ve known him for a long time, and I started talking him to a bit about my vision, not just for my own place in Dunblane but using it as a work force development base in Scotland. We all have to join forces, because at the end of the day we are all working to make things better for tennis in Scotland.”

Murray argues cogently that Scottish tennis needs Scottish solutions. For a start, the infrastructure of indoor and outdoor courts simply isn’t there, rather essential given the fluctuating weather, all four seasons of which just happen to be in evidence on this particular day.

While there was a £15m LTA facilities announcement back in December 2016, that is two years ago now. Five projects are at stage two and none of them to date are actually under construction.

Moreover, while the LTA can rely on a whopping surplus from Wimbledon, Tennis Scotland has to rely on hand-outs as it doesn’t have a major money-spinning tournament of its own or year-round access to its top players. Ideally, at some point, individual sponsors and businesses could come along and provide backing to individual elements of the strategic plan. “I know Scottish tennis inside out, I know the landscape, I know the people,” said Judy. “And I know that the Murray legacy if you like will be measured in the amount of people who are playing - and staying – in tennis. For many years now British and Scottish tennis has invested a lot in mini tennis in schools. But schools in Scotland – unless you go to a very posh one – don’t have tennis courts. So it doesn’t usually lead to anything.

“Part of the strategic plan that I will be most involved in will be the workforce build. But I want a particular focus on engaging families. Because my kids got into sport because I was sporty, so was their dad, and so were their grandparents. If a child is interesting in playing tennis, they will probably play once a week like they go swimming or do piano. But if they are going to get good at it they need someone to practice with. If we can bring this strategic plan together, if we can get increased support from the LTA and the government to develop the strategic plan and roll it out over the next four or five years it ciuld also be that parts of the strategic plan are attractive to sponsors.”

“This is a massive step forward today,” said Dodds. “We all realise we are not going to be successful if we all act in isolation. We are coming together with one plan for Scotland that partners can get behind, invest and get a return on.”