If you missed Andy Murray correcting a journalist at Wimbledon this summer, you missed a gem!
Andy Murray corrected a journalist who said that Querrey was “the first US player to reach a major semi-final since 2009” in a post match interview.
In actual fact Serena Williams, playing for the US, has won 12 Grand Slam tournaments since 2009.
Murray quickly retorted “male player” as the journalist nervously laughed and tried to cover up his mistake.
The video serves as an important lesson to journalists to get facts right, even if it’s just the way something is worded.
Check and check again is one of the top tips I recommended in my post PR lessons from Harvey Specter.
Stamping out sexism in any shape or form is important. Women female tennis stars work hard to win their titles and their achievements are no less than their male counterparts.
Intentional or unintentional, it’s a sexism blunder on behalf of the journalist and it’s brilliant that Andy identifies it immediately and looks seriously unimpressed. Advantage Murray.
In this situation Andy responded brilliantly and I’m sure his publicist gave him a pat on the back for how he handled this one.
It’s a PR win for Murray too, often being portrayed by the press as unfeeling, cold and with no personality. The video footage has shown a different side to the tennis ace, gone viral and given Andy a lot of positive PR.
Handling live media situations is not easy and often celebrities, company representatives and organisation heads required training.
Being media trained prepares people for being filmed or live interactions with the media. Responding to questions on the spot does not come naturally to everyone and a bit of practice can help a spokesperson become more media savvy.
Most PR agencies offer media training, usually in a session with an actual journalist or ex-journalist. These sessions take a person through a crisis situation and films them to see how well they respond.
Training is then given and the process is repeated to familiarise the person with how to respond and what certain responses might provoke from a journalist.
I think media training for spokespeople should be essential, in the same way that journalists receive intense training on how to get the most out of the people they interview. Why shouldn’t the people answering be just as equipped as the person posing the questions?
What did you think of Murray’s reaction? Please share with me your thoughts in the comments section.