Andy Murray says winning at Queen's Club will give him 'big boost' before Wimbledon

Queen's Club

2017 Aegon Championships
Venue: Queen’s Club, London Dates: 19-25 June
Coverage: Comprehensive live coverage on BBC One, BBC Two, Red Button, Connected TV and online daily

Andy Murray will begin his attempt to win a sixth Aegon Championships title when he faces fellow Briton Aljaz Bedene at Queen’s Club on Tuesday.

The pair will meet in the third match on Centre Court at about 15:30 BST.

Fellow Britons James Ward and Cameron Norrie are also in action, along with second seed Stan Wawrinka and last year’s runner-up Milos Raonic.

“I’ve played some of my best tennis over the years here,” Murray told BBC Sport.

“It’s a tough, tough field and if you can get through this tournament then it does give you a big boost going into Wimbledon.”

Ward, 30, will play only his third match since an eight-month absence with a knee injury when he takes on Frenchman Julien Benneteau.

The Londoner, a former semi-finalist at Queen’s, is now ranked 1,062nd in the world and was given a wildcard.

Norrie, 21, also received a wildcard – as the leading player on the US college circuit – and he takes on American Sam Querrey.

Canadian third seed Raonic opens play at 12:00 against Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis, before Switzerland’s Wawrinka takes on Spain’s Feliciano Lopez.

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Pressure & expectation builds around Murray

Murray, 30, returns to his most successful tournament, having won the title in 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2016. Last year he became the first man to win the event five times.

He is on a 14-match winning streak on grass, having gone on to claim a second Wimbledon title last year, and begins his 33rd week ranked number one in the world.

That status will now come under pressure, as the rolling 52-week ranking system means he must get close to his herculean efforts of 2016 – when he won another seven titles after his Queen’s victory – or see the likes of Wawrinka or Rafael Nadal start to close in quickly.

“It’s obviously a lot of pressure at this time of year, a lot of expectation and attention,” said Murray, who is attempting to win a third Wimbledon to equal Fred Perry’s British record.

“But I have the escape of being able to get back home and stay in my own bed and be with my family, and have the support of my friends and family at all of my matches, so that’s the best part about this period of the year.”

Murray beat Bedene, the British number four, in straight sets at last year’s Aegon Championships.

BBC coverage

BBC Sport will provide the usual comprehensive live coverage on BBC One, BBC Two, Red Button, Connected TV and online daily throughout the competition.

A title winner at Queen’s a record five times, Murray’s victory over Raonic in the 2016 final was watched by 3.7 million people on TV, with many more listening on BBC Radio 5 live and following online.

Barbara Slater, director of BBC Sport, described the tournament as “one of the most cherished events in the tennis calendar”.

Full details of BBC Sport’s coverage

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