CITI OPEN 2014
Tennis Meets Manchester United In Washington D.C.
by ATP Staff|
Stars of tennis and football came together on Monday afternoon as Tomas Berdych, Kei Nishikori and Jamie Murray met with Manchester United players, who are in Washington, D.C., ahead of a pre-season friendly with Inter Milan on Tuesday night.
Manchester United were represented by Spanish star Juan Mata, new club signing Ander Herrera and winger Antonio Valencia. The players exchanged shirts, with Berdych also presenting the footballers with one of his racquets, before taking part in a skills challenge.
"For us the only time we can see them is on the TV; there's really not much time to go and see some matches live," said Berdych. "This is even better, just to meet with them, talk, chat, exchange some gifts. It's really cool."
First up, Murray tried out his keepy-uppy skills under the watchful eye of Mata and Herrera, before tennis fan Mata – who has previously attended the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals as a guest of Rafael Nadal – attempted juggling a tennis ball on his racquet. The Spaniard made light work of his own keepy-uppy challenge, casually asking when he should stop after more than a minute bouncing the tennis ball on his foot.
"It was awesome, they were all really cool guys," said Murray. "They were good fun to speak to. Definitely not your average doe for us."
The sports stars spent time chatting, with avid Manchester United fan Murray keen to get the inside track on latest transfer happenings at the club, while also welcoming newcomer Herrera, who talked to the Scot about the challenges of learning English. Murray, whose wife is Colombian, is an improving Spanish speaker.
Players competing at this week’s Citi Open have been invited to Manchester United’s match on Tuesday night at the FedEx Field in Washington, D.C.