Tuesday 23 January 2018

Laura Robson becomes the latest UK hope to lose at Wimbledon

BRITISH hopes took another dip today as Laura Robson became the latest homegrown talent to bow out of Wimbledon.

The 18-year-old was left "really disappointed" after former French Open champion Francesca Schiavone came from one set down to beat her 2-6 6-4 6-4.

Robson, who earned a standing ovation when she left Court Two, becomes the latest Brit to go out of the tournament, a situation which will only serve to ramp up the pressure on Andy Murray.

The British number one faces former world number three Nikolay Davydenko on Centre Court today as he begins his bid to become the first British man to win Wimbledon since Fred Perry in 1936.

Murray mania hit SW19 as fans queued to get their chance to see the 25-year-old try to take the title.

After her match Robson - who looked close to tears at times - said: "I'm really disappointed actually. I thought I was in control of it, and then just made a few mistakes and let her get back into the match."

The teenager admitted a break in the match while Schiavone went off court for treatment on an injury had not helped her efforts.

"In general I think she took a lot of time between points, and that gave me more time to think about what I was doing. I think that's really tough," she said.

But asked if the Italian's grunting put her off, she replied: "I was grunting as well. Doesn't bother me at all."

Robson follows fellow Britons Josh Goodall and Oli Golding, who were both knocked out of the tournament yesterday.

And 22-year-old Naomi Broady left the grand slam stage today after losing 6-4 7-6 (7/4) to Lourdes Dominguez Lino.

Robson said she will now be rooting for compatriot Heather Watson who celebrated her first Wimbledon win last night, defeating Czech world number 52 Iveta Benesova 6-2 6-1 on Centre Court.

Fans were eagerly awaiting Andy Murray's Centre Court appearance today. And despite speculation over his form, many said they would be still be standing by him.

Mark Martin was first in the queue for tickets this morning, after arriving from his home on the Isle of Lewis, Scotland, on Friday.

The 46-year-old delivery driver, who is camping during the grand slam, said: "I think he'll definitely get through today. Davydenko's form isn't good on grass.

"Murray's got a tough draw, no doubt about it, but all we can do is hope, can't we?"

Sisters Suzanne Pyefinch and Michele Jennings, from Great Yarmouth in Norfolk, arrived on Friday in the rain. They queued up today to make sure they could get tickets.

Mrs Pyefinch, 40, said: "I don't think today's going to be as big a problem as everyone makes out. It will be a good game."

She said she did not think Murray's physical fitness was the issue, adding: "It's more about his head, we know that."

She said too many people "jumped on the bandwagon" of negative comments about Murray: "Sometimes you have to work a bit harder for the positive comments.

"It's too easy to jump on the bandwagon and say he isn't going to win."

Murray's mother Judy Murray has said the 25-year-old "wears his heart on his sleeve" but has grown in experience, especially through seeing the behaviour of his rivals.

She told the Daily Telegraph: "He has learned a lot over the years, through playing and through observing the other top players, how they behave and how they handle the demands that are on them.

"I think he wears his heart on his sleeve and it's just part of what makes him what he is.

"But you have to be careful not to show your opponent too much about what you're feeling. He is experienced now, but you can't change who you are."

Murray, who was at the south-west London club's practice courts with brother Jamie yesterday, has said he plans to spend as "little time as necessary" at the courts during the Grand Slam.

Writing in his blog, he said he would "come in, get my tennis done, have physio, a massage and then leave".

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