Norrie has lived a thoroughly international life – born in South Africa to British microbiologist parents; they lived in Johannesburg until he was three, when they relocated to New Zealand. Norrie grew up in Auckland and represented New Zealand at junior level until he was 16, when he switched allegiances to Great Britain and moved to London to capitalise on the greater funding. Evidence of his jet-set life can be picked up in his accent, which even Norrie admits can be difficult to place. But Norrie firmly identifies as a Brit, previously saying: ‘I consider myself British. Both my parents are British. My mum is Welsh and my dad is Scottish, with a filthy Scottish accent.’
It’s easy to see where his athleticism comes from. His mother, Helen, was a long-distance runner and his father, David, a Scot, was the No 1 ranked squash player for British universities. It was reportedly his mother who first introduced her son to tennis.
Norrie’s girlfriend took to Instagram to celebrate her boyfriend’s win. She wrote: ‘Sometimes you wonder if it even really happened. Don’t worry. It did!’ The caption accompanied pictures of Norrie kissing the Indian Wells trophy, followed by a picture of him kissing her.
Norrie, down-to-earth and extremely talented, praised Emma Raducanu as a galvanising inspiration. ‘I don’t know what’s more believable: her winning the US Open or me winning this,’ Norrie joked during a conversation with a small group of British reporters. ‘What she has done was extremely impressive and she inspired me a little bit. I mean, that was crazy.’ These are halcyon days for British tennis.
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