Kirk Cousins, quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings, likes how hard Andy Murray works on the court and how determined he is.
Murray is back in the US and playing in the Hall of Fame Open in Newport. He ran into Cousins there.
Cousins is a big fan of tennis, so Murray gave him a short meeting.
In a short meeting with Murray that was caught on camera, Cousins said, “I admire your grit.”
Cousins later told ATPTour.com what he meant by what he said in a chat.
“That’s the word that comes to mind when I think about him: his determination, toughness, and ability to get back on his feet after getting hurt. As a singles player, tennis is already hard on your mind. You’re all by yourself. Matches can get long, you need to dig deep. It can be hard on your mind and your heart.
“Watching how he has handled not only his career but also individual matches is inspiring and helps me with what I do.”
Cousins also said that playing tennis during the off-season has helped his NFL game.
The quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings said that his interest in tennis came from a similarity between serving and throwing a football.
“I really like the game. I wanted to find a way to train when the season wasn’t going on, but I didn’t want to do boring training. I wanted to do something fun. “I was worried about getting hurt playing pick-up basketball, so I ended up playing tennis and fell in love with it,” Cousins said.
“I didn’t know how much it would help me when I played quarterback. I just can’t get enough. So, I’m here in Newport today for that reason.
“As I got older and stopped playing tennis as much to focus on football, Federer, Nadal, and Djokovic rose to the top,” said Cousins.
“Now that I’m getting into it, those guys are getting a little older, so it’s been fun to see some of the younger names start to make a run.”
Two of the four players Andy Murray wants to coach are from the UK.
Cousins says that the big four are a lesson in how to stay in the best shape to do your best.
“I think the body works, and it lasts a long time. Tennis is hard on their bodies in a lot of ways. Cousins said, “I think there’s something to being able to play as long as possible in the way they travel and take care of themselves. “I think the work they’re putting into taking care of their bodies is a good example.”