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Andy Murray Live raises over £700,000 for charity.

Andy Murray Live raises over £700,000 for charity

Andy Murray Live raises over £700,000 for charity

We were delighted to continue our partnership with Andy Murray by supporting Andy Murray Live on 7 November – an event that raised over £700,000 for Unicef UK and Scottish based charity, Sunny-sid3up.

A sold-out crowd of 10,800 were treated to night of entertaining tennis. This year saw Andy take on Roger Federer in the singles, before he was joined by brother Jamie to take on Tim Henman and Mansour Bahrami in the doubles – with Still Game stars, Jack and Winston surprising the Glasgow crowd with an impromptu appearance during the doubles.

Andy commented: “It was always really important to me that this event should be for charity and so I’m really pleased we’ve been able to build on the success of last year and more than double what we raised in year one. Being able to support children and those in need is really important to me. The money raised will make a real difference in Scotland and around the world.

During the afternoon, ten lucky colleagues from across our UK offices joined Andy, Judy Murray and Leon Smith on court at the SSE Hydro for a coaching clinic. It was a once in a lifetime experience:

"Words can't describe what an epic day and evening this was and all for such a great cause – I'm still on cloud nine. Don't think I'll be playing for Wimbledon any time soon but so much fun having the chance to get some tips from our very own Scottish hero and Olympian." Georgina Cooper, Investment Analyst.

"An experience that exceeded all expectations from start to finish and one I will always remember." Paul Baxter, Acturial Analyst.

"A fantastic day out. Was great meeting and playing with Andy. Highlight for me was seeing Rodger Federer hold his serve in a kilt!" Mairi Nolan, Trainee Solicitor.

2017 so far.

2017

2017

It’s been a great first three years with Andy – and a period that’s been important for both himself and our businesses. So we’re delighted that Aberdeen Standard Investments has extended our partnership with Andy for another three years.

It’s an exciting time for our company – we completed the merger of Standard Life plc and Aberdeen Asset Management PLC in August – and the partnership with Andy will support our plans to build our new brand globally.

It’s been a year of big decisions and challenges for Andy too – and another showcase of the world-class ambitions we share.

He’s faced different kinds of challenges compared to 2016, as injuries have forced him to take time out to recover and reassess. It’s meant taking some brave calls, such as missing important events like the US Open. But it reflects the drive he has to come back stronger and make sure he’s always performing at the top level.

These are qualities that really resonate with us, and we’re really looking forward to seeing where Andy and our company can go together over the coming years. We’re also excited to join him on home turf in November, when he returns to Scotland for his star-studded Andy Murray Live event.

Andy took some time out before Wimbledon to talk to the MoneyPlus team about teamwork.

It’s all about teamwork

It’s all about teamwork

Andy took some time out before Wimbledon to talk to the MoneyPlus team about teamwork.

Here's what he had to say

Andy Murray crowned BBC Sports Personality of the Year for the third time

Congratulations, Sir Andy

Congratulations, Sir Andy

To top an absolutely world class year, Andy Murray was awarded with a knighthood in the New Year Honours list.

Andy’s hugely successful 2016, his commitment to excellence and to mastering his dreams, have all lead him to achieving this greatest of honours.

We’re extremely proud to be #withAndy.

World class

2016 – world class from start to finish

How can you cram Andy’s momentous 2016 into just a few paragraphs? Not easily, but we thought we’d give it a shot.

From finals to fatherhood

In February Andy reached his fifth Australian Open final. Although he lost out to long-time rival Novak Djokovic, it suggested a promising year ahead. And he didn’t have long to wait for things to start looking up – as he became a father to baby Sophia just over a week later.

If Andy was suffering from the sleep deficit that greets most new parents, he wasn't showing it on court. As the clay court season got going, Andy took the Rome Masters title. Ideal preparation for the second Grand Slam event of the year, the French Open. Another milestone reached there, as he made the final for the first time.

A summer to remember

In May Amelie Mauresmo stepped aside as coach, and Ivan Lendl rejoined the team. And the fine form continued. Andy started the grass court season by making history – becoming the first man to win the title at Queen's Club five times. The perfect warm-up for Wimbledon, where he just kept on going – powering his way to his second triumph there. That's right – the Brit who won Wimbledon twice. What could be bigger than that?

Well, plenty, as it happens. And according to Andy, the biggest moment of his career was yet to come – as he was chosen to be Team GB’s flag bearer at the opening ceremony of the Rio Olympics. Andy did his bit in making it the most successful British team at an overseas Games too – successfully defending his Olympic title in an epic gold medal match against Argentina's Juan Martin del Potro.

The run to number one

There was disappointment for Andy and Britain's Davis Cup team, as the reigning champions lost out at the semi-final stage in September. But from that point on there was no stopping him. A breathtaking run of consecutive wins, including tournament titles in Beijing, Shanghai and Vienna, meant he was edging closer to the very top – the world number one spot. It would take some world-beating form – and a little bit of luck – to get there. Could he really make it happen?

Of course he could. In reaching the final of the Paris Masters – combined with Djokovic losing at the quarter-final stage – it was enough to make Andy the first British male to top the ATP world rankings since they started in 1973. For good measure, he won the final in Paris too.

Andy returned to the UK in November for the final event of the season – the ATP World Tour Finals in London. And it was a triumphant homecoming too. His win over Djokovic in the final means he retains the number one spot going into 2017.

Milestones reached, history made, and more dreams mastered - all in one incredible year. What’s next? New dreams, new goals, and the same determination to make them happen.

Andy Murray crowned BBC Sports Personality of the Year for the third time

Andy Murray crowned BBC Sports Personality of the Year for the third time

Andy Murray crowned BBC Sports Personality of the Year for the third time

After an epic 2016, where he racked up an impressive amount of titles, Andy Murray secured the BBC Personality of the Year title last night for a record third time.

During his acceptance speech, Andy said "It's been a great year for British sport and I am so proud to have been a part of it".

This latest accolade for Andy really does round off an extraordinary year for the World Number One.

Nutritionist Glenn Kearney shares his insight into Andy’s diet

Nutritionist Glenn Kearney shares his insight into Andy’s diet

Nutritionist Glenn Kearney shares his insight into Andy’s diet

How did you become a nutritionist?
After completing an Exercise Science degree I wanted to continue to learn, nutrition was the most obvious field that complemented my existing degree. From there I was hooked as it is such an interesting field so pursued a Masters in Sports Nutrition whilst also lecturing at University. From there I was drawn into consulting with elite athletes and teams

How long have you worked with Andy?
8 months - Since the start of the clay court season in 2015. It's a privilege to work with him and his team.

In your role do you have to be really strict?
Not with Andy, as his drive for improvement on the court means that he has a very high level of personal motivation and discipline. Which is aimed at maximising and optimising his training and practise sessions (both volume and quality). So Andy eats in a disciplined way but this comes from within rather than me having to impose too many rules. Thankfully he has a good feel for balance in his lifestyle and will at times loosen the reins.

What are Andy's favourite healthy snacks?
Andy has an appreciation for real food and quality food so some obvious examples are fruits which make good snacks alone or as part of a small meal.

What's the best pre and post workout snack?
Andy uses smoothies as a convenient way to get Calories and high quality nutrients. We use a variety of snack bars.

Does Andy have any sneaky guilty pleasure foods?
Probably many that I don't know about! Like most people he enjoys desserts - who can resist some good ice cream now and again. Thankfully he is burning off these desserts with his demanding playing and training schedule.

How many calories does Andy eat per day?
This can be highly variable, the nature of tennis dictates this. He will consume 4000-6000 Kcal per day depending on the circumstances.

Does Andy have a strict eating schedule?
During tournaments we map out every meal, snack and drink for the whole day and build this into the rest of his preparation (hitting, physio, warm up). This provides clarity for the day, removes some mundane decision making and gives him confidence that his body is prepared for battle on the tennis court.

Does Andy vary his diet depending on location?
There is some variation that is based on local specialities and style of food - the bonus of time on the road is the exposure to different cultures and of course food is a massive part of any nation's culture. Most of Andy's time is in warm climates so the constant battle is hydration. He has higher requirements for salt thanks to the losses from sweating on court.

How much does Andy need to drink during a match? And what does he drink?
Andy drinks water and a Sports drink during matches and the total volume of fluid drunk in a 3 hour match would be approximately 4.5 - 5 litres. This is a huge volume of fluid but it's absolutely necessary to combat the heat. Also consider that in the Grand Slams matches will go beyond the 4 hour mark. Tough stuff!

What is your number one tip for healthy eating?
My number one tip is control your environment. A fridge and larder that is well stocked with healthy food and meal/snack options that are easy to prepare will go a long way towards helping people make good decisions. It's hard for any to resist tempting food so try to avoid exposure to it and keep healthy food nearby. I will add that if you make a simple switch to more whole foods while decreasing processed foods then that one simple change will make a big difference to the quality of your diet. Eat and enjoy real food!

Do you have any tips for keeping it healthy this Christmas?
Oh please! Can everybody just enjoy the combination of food, family and the festive spirit without a Nutritionist putting a damper on it! But here is my tip. Go out in the morning before your Xmas lunch and do something active and fun with the family so you feel like you deserve to indulge during that special meal.

Andy Aces

Andy takes time out of his busy schedule to share his reflections of 2015

Andy's reflections of 2015

If someone asked me to describe this year in one word, I honestly don't think I would be able to do it, so here's a blog which hopefully explains my 2015 in little more detail.

It's no secret that last year was probably one of the toughest years of my career, the back surgery in the latter stages of 2013 was much tougher to come back from than I ever expected, so after all the ups and downs of the year before it was important to me to start strong.

Making the final in Australia was a huge achievement for me, in my run to the final I truly felt like I was back playing some the best tennis of my career, and despite it ending with a disappointing result losing to Novak, the confidence the run gave me heading into the rest of the year was huge.

As they are every year, Grand Slams are the ultimate goal, and that didn't change this year. The major events are the reason players train and work so hard on and off the court every year. Unfortunately this year for me the majors weren't meant to be, I didn't quite make it over the line in them, which is always disappointing. That being said though I came away from each one with things I could use and areas that I felt I could work on to keep improving and for me that's incredibly motivating.

Moving on from the majors though, it's safe to say that my year has been one of the most successful of my career to date, and one which has thrown up quite a few firsts!

For starters, I won my first clay court tournament in Munich in May, which was then followed up with my first clay court Masters title in Madrid. Clay had previously always been a surface that I had struggled on, so performing as well as I did this year on the dirt was a huge personal achievement for me. I'd never even made a clay court final up until this year and I finished the year with one of the best clay records on the tour!

Another first for me this year was my year end ranking. I finished the year as the world number two, my highest year-end ranking to date. After struggling through last year and at one stage dropping out of the top 10, to come back this year and finish as the world number two, is an incredibly special feeling and it's something I'm really proud of.

Whilst we're on the subject of pride, now is probably a good time to mention that I sit here as a Davis Cup champion for the very first time!

Growing up, becoming World Champion of your sport whilst representing your country is something you can only dream of, however this year, that dream finally became a reality. Those of you that follow British tennis will know that the British team has been on quite a journey over the last 5 years. At one stage we were one match away from dropping into the lowest tier of world tennis, however under the direction of Leon Smith, the team has gone from strength to strength and rapidly risen through the ranks of world tennis, culminating with us winning the whole competition for the first time in 79 years, something that none of us ever thought possible.

Representing my country has always been something I have enjoyed doing, it's something I never take for granted and I'm incredibly proud every time I wear the British colours. To win the biggest competition in international tennis with my country is an incredible honour and it will be a day I will never forget.

Obviously for me life is bigger than the tennis tour, and It wasn't just a year of firsts on the court for me, it was also a year of firsts off the court.

In April this year I married my long-term partner Kim, which was an amazing day. We've been together for a long time now so married life hasn't really changed us, but the day itself was great. We got married in my hometown of Dunblane, surrounded by all our closest family and friends and it was honestly the best day of our lives.

The biggest first of all for us though off the court, is coming early next year, as we are also expecting our first child. As is every big change it's going to be a huge challenge, but it's something we both so excited about and really looking forward to. Priorities will obviously change, tennis will take second nature, but I'm ok with that. Starting our own family is something we've always been passionate about, and If I'm being completely honest we're just really looking forward to getting started and becoming real 'hands on' parents.

I've been told to make the most of the peace and quiet between now and when the baby arrives, so I've used that as the perfect excuse to fly out to Dubai next week to begin my pre season preparations for Australia with my team. I will train out there for a couple of weeks before returning just before Christmas for BBC Sports Personality of the Year in Belfast. The last few years I have been nominated I haven't been able to make it, but this year I'm hoping to be able to fly across for it, The Davis Cup team are nominated for Team of the Year and I'm also up for the main award, so it should hopefully prove to be an exciting and hopefully successful evening.

This has been such a unique year for me I could write on for a long time however, to finish, what I really want to say is a huge thank you to everyone at Standard Life for all their support over the past 18 months, I'm proud to have you as a partner and I hope we can share in many more successes over the coming years.

I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas, here's to a happy, healthy and successful 2016!

Andy

Andy at SL House

Find out what happened when Andy visited Standard Life

Andy Murray's physiotherapist, Shane Annun, shares the challenges and privileges of working with a world-class athlete

Andy Murray's physiotherapist, Shane Annun, shares the challenges and privileges of working with a world-class athlete

Andy Murray's physiotherapist, Shane Annun, shares the challenges and privileges of working with a world-class athlete.

Creating healthier, happier and more productive people is key to success for any business. And for Shane Annun, Andy Murray's physiotherapist, things are no different.

Shane's main objective is to ensure that Andy is in optimum condition and injury free for all practice sessions and matches.

Qualifying as a physiotherapist in 2002, Shane built up experience in different areas of physiotherapy and professional sport. He worked with the LTA (Lawn Tennis Association) and Queens Park Rangers Football Club before starting work with Andy last year during the Davis Cup.

"Andy is incredibly meticulous in everything he does, be it in the warm up or on court," says Shane. "He's always very professional and good fun to be around."

It's crucial that Shane works closely with the others in Andy's team, especially considering the challenges posed by modern tennis. "Players are involved in lots of long points and matches, often played in very tough conditions with minimal time to recover between matches. They have to work extremely hard to prepare themselves for this both physically and mentally," says Shane. "As such, working closely with other members of the team is a key component to us all helping Andy on a day-to-day basis. Frequent communication is vital between the disciplines. We all work together, discuss matters and help each other in a multitude of areas."

New concepts and advances in research are always happening within sports physiotherapy and medicine, too, and it's vital to stay up to date with all the latest developments to ensure success.

It's a challenging role for Shane, and one that must be constantly adapted to the circumstances. Different surfaces affect the body in different ways, as does climate, and all of this must be taken into account on a daily basis by the entire team. However, the results are more than able to speak for themselves, victory or not: "It's an honour to work with a truly world class athlete like Andy," says Shane.

Andy Aces

Andy aces for Unicef

Andy aces for Unicef

Andy Murray is a proud Unicef ambassador and has just announced that he will donate £50 for every ace he serves between now and the end of the year. Standard Life are going to match this and give £50 per ace too. Unicef's Syria appeal supports children affected by the crisis by protecting them through the provision of essential services - including health care, food, emotional support and education. They will also provide adequate shelter for migrants and refugees that will help keep families together. The appeal is designed to ensure adequate numbers of trained child welfare experts are in place to support children and their families and put the best interests of children first in all decisions made. Donations will be specifically focused on helping children in Syria and the surrounding countries to give crucial and lifesaving supplies such as clean water, medicine and psychological support.

Andy Murray on weddings, tennis and his perfect dinner party

Andy Murray on weddings, tennis and his perfect dinner party

Andy Murray on weddings, tennis and his perfect dinner party

The Standard Life MoneyPlus blog have netted an interview with Andy Murray. The British tennis star took time out of his busy schedule to hold court and provide a fascinating and fun insight into his life, goals and plans for the future.

Here's what he had to say…

Mark Little

Read our interview with Andy's Strength and Conditioning coach, Matt Little

Mark Little

Matt Little, Strength and Conditioning coach

Matt Little has worked with Andy for most of his career, and is responsible for making sure Andy is in optimum condition to compete at the highest levels of Tour tennis. As well as designing Andy's gruelling training blocks, Matt handles many of Andy's day-to-day performance needs, which can include anything from Andy's stretching routines to last minute dashes for ice cubes to fill an ice bath.

His nickname is Treacle.

What does a strength and conditioning coach do?

All aspects of off court physical preparation (except medical). Focus is optimising performance while minimising injury.

What sort of skills or personality type do you need to have to do your role well?

You need to have courage of your convictions, thick skin and an ability to put your ego to one side and do what is best for the player. It also helps to be fun and very positive in nature.

How did you get into this role - and how could someone else?

I played a lot of sport (including tennis) from a young age and quickly realised that although I loved it I was never going to make a professional. I knew at the age of 16 exactly what I wanted to do, specialised in one sport and stuck to it. I took my university studies and then offered my services on a voluntary basis to gain enough experience for paid work. You must be willing to travel to wherever the work may be. I volunteered for 6 years at home and abroad until I got my first paid S&C in tennis job, then worked my way up the levels.

Are there courses or qualifications that you needed to take?

Sports Science Degree (or equivalent), personal trainer/fitness instructor qualifications and then when ready UK Strength and Conditioning Association (UKSCA) Accreditation.

What's the most enjoyable aspect of your job?

Watching Andy play and win! Seeing a plan that not just you, but the whole team has put into place, come to fruition. I also love our team's interaction. It's so much fun.

What are the main challenges you face?

Time away from family and friends. Not easy for them or us.

How has the way players train and prepare changed in the last few years?

The level of information around an individual's performance is expanding rapidly and can inform training and practice in a very detailed way. The science is developing at an exciting rate - especially in the wearable technology aspect.

How do you think things will change in the future?

Accuracy of information will improve and the efficiency/invasiveness of the information gathering process will become far slicker. We are going to be able to measure just about anything.

How do you prepare for a major tournament like the Australian Open or Wimbledon?

6 weeks out, focus on physical development and base building. 4 weeks out, focus more on tennis drilling and specific on court development. 2 weeks out focus on competing and points based play.

Do you approach each tournament in the same way, or are they all different?

They are all different. Lead in/ preparation time, conditions, athlete status, time of the year, travel requirements, venue specifics (such as equipment available, local food etc) and of course surface.

Do you prepare Andy (or other players) differently for clay or grass?

Yes, polar opposites in terms of physical requirements. Clay, long duration points with high bouncing balls on a slow pace surface. Grass short duration points on a low bouncing surface on medium/fast pace courts. Training programme must reflect both.

Is there a tournament you like more than the others?

Tradition and buzz around Wimbledon is so special. To be fair, every Grand Slam is amazing in its own right.

What's Andy like to work with?

Incredibly professional and dedicated. I've never seen any athlete like him in this respect. His body also adapts so quickly to training. He is challenging and uncompromising in his pursuit of excellence in his training too, which is precisely how it should be. Away from the court he loves to joke and have fun.

What's a typical training session with Andy like?

In a typical gym session, we will be in there for 60-120mins depending on what we are working on. He lifts a lot of weights, does a great deal of cardio training and core training. More so these days, his focus has also shifted to mobility, flexibility and injury prevention training.

What does Andy enjoy most about strength and conditioning sessions - and what does he enjoy the least?

He loves setting new personal bests and looking at his training stats. He is constantly pushing the envelope to get more from his body. He doesn't enjoy the ice baths, but sees them as a necessary evil!

What is it like to be part of Andy's team?

Firstly, it's an honour and a privilege. To not only live in an era where we have a British Grand Slam champ, but to be working with him is very special. Secondly, it is fun. We have a great team spirit. Finally, it is a positive challenge. Getting the most out of Andy and each other requires non-stop effort and commitment.

How closely do you work with other members of the team?

It is seamless. It has to be. Communication is vital, with so many aspects of his technical, tactical, physical and mental preparation happening at any one time, we simply drop the ball in any area. Clear goals, measurable objectives, backed up by a team vision and set of values we live by each day. That's the way it is.

Besides tennis, what sports do you follow or participate it?

Charlton Athletic football team. Say no more.

Our film crew catches Andy in action
Andy looking determined after securing his place in Australian Open Semi Final
Watching the video playback on set
 

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