Andy Murray "incredibly irritated" by Cristiano Ronaldo 'SIU' celebration at Australian Open
Ronaldo's celebration has made it Down Under
Andy Murray admitted he was 'incredibly irritated' by the Cristiano Ronaldo-inspired 'SIU' celebrations following his hard-fought victory in the first round of the Australian Open.
The Scot made a sensational return to the court - where he believed he had played his last competitive game in 2019 - securing a 6-1, 3-6, 6-4, 6-7, 6-4 win over Nikoloz Basilashvili in a five-set thriller in Melbourne.
During his tournament opener, shouts of 'SIU' could be heard from the crowd - a reference to the celebration synonymous with Manchester United forward Ronaldo.
Since the Portuguese captain returned to Old Trafford in the summer, his famous run, jump and shout celebration has increased in popularity. However, it is somewhat surprising to see it at a tennis event, in Australia, with absolutely no reference to Ronaldo whatsoever.
While the celebration appeared to be an appreciation of Murray's heroic efforts Down Under - rather than a mockery - Murray revealed he found the cries irritating.
Andy Murray on the Ronaldo-style "Siiuuu" noise during his win: "It was incredibly irritating" #AusOpen
— Neil McLeman (@NeilMcLeman) January 18, 2022
Following the match, he said: "I think it's like 'Siuu' or something that Ronaldo does when he scores.
"And, yeah, it was incredibly irritating (smiling). Yeah, I think that's what they were doing."
The former British and world No. 1 also admitted that he initially thought the crowd were booing him - with the celebration first appearing at one of his training sessions prior to the match.
Murray added: "Initially, I thought it was [booing], because there were some people booing during my practice yesterday.
"I had no idea what for. Yeah, so originally that's what I thought it was."
Don't worry - the crowd weren't booing @andy_murray ...
"Initially, I thought it was [booing], because there were some people booing during my practice yesterday. I have no idea what for (smiling). Yeah, so originally that's what I thought it was." 1/2
— Tennis Majors (@Tennis_Majors) January 18, 2022
Although the Brit was annoyed with the crowd distractions, he produced an incredible performance to set up a second round clash with Taro Daniel.
Having been on the brink of retirement in Melbourne just three years ago, Murray said it was 'amazing' to be back competing at the top level following his five-set victory.
"It was amazing. It has been a tough three or four years," said the two-time Wimbledon champion.
"I’ve put in a lot of work to get back here. I have played on this court many times and the atmosphere is incredible. I have always had fantastic support.
"This is where I thought I had potentially played my last match three years ago but it is amazing to be back, winning a five-set battle like that. I couldn’t ask for any more."
Murray will face-off against Daniel on Thursday, hoping to produce another strong performance and progress into the third round.