Murray feeling 'good' after three practice sessions in one day

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Wimbledon 2017 on the BBC
Venue: All England Club Dates: 3-16 July Starts: 11:30 BST
Live: Coverage across BBC TV, BBC Radio and BBC Sport website with further coverage on Red Button, Connected TVs and app.

Britain’s Andy Murray said he was feeling “good” after practising three times on Friday as he recovers from a hip injury which saw him pull out of his final Wimbledon warm-up match.

Murray, 30, pulled out of an exhibition match in London on Friday, three days before he begins his Wimbledon defence.

BBC Sport’s David Ornstein said Murray “grimaced” at times during practice but was “comfortable” in his final session.

Ivan Lendl, the world number one’s coach, said: “Practice has gone well.”

A two-time Wimbledon champion, Murray will face Kazakhstan’s world number 134 Alexander Bublik on Centre Court at 13:00 BST on Monday.

It will be only the Scot’s second competitive match on grass this summer as he lost in the first round of the Aegon Championships.

Prior to Friday, Murray had not been able to practice since Tuesday.

Andy Murray during practice

How Murray’s day unfolded

BBC Sport’s David Ornstein said: “The decision to practise three times in a day this close to a tournament is unusual.

“At about 9:30, Lendl told us that Murray was ‘doing great’, and after 10 the defending champion began hitting with Belgium’s Steve Darcis on the Aorangi Park practice courts.

“The pair then moved over match court nine, in full view of the media and groundstaff. Murray looked reasonably comfortable as he and Darcis exchanged groundstrokes, but in between he limped heavily, bent over and grimaced.

“The world number one then took part in some volleying and serving drills, appearing to reach close to full intensity. He continued to move gingerly and grimace, but he did not hold back.

“Between serves he was seen joking and smiling with Lendl, who also spent a period in deep conversation with Wimbledon chief executive Richard Lewis. Murray left without taking any questions from the written or broadcast media.

“He then hit with 17-year-old Scottish junior Aidan McHugh and looked fairly comfortable and relaxed, with his team looking relaxed too.”

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Heather Watson loses to Caroline Wozniacki in Eastbourne semi-finals

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Eastbourne 2017
Venue: Devonshire Park, Eastbourne Date: 26 June-1 July
Coverage: Live across BBC Two, Red Button, Connected TVs and online. Click here for times

Heather Watson’s fine run at the Aegon International in Eastbourne came to an end when she was beaten 6-2 3-6 7-5 by Caroline Wozniacki in the semi-finals.

The Briton, ranked 126 after a disappointing year, had her serve broken three three times by the world number six in a nervous first set.

Watson, 25, fought back well to take the Dane to a third set.

But Wozniacki, the 2009 champion, won the key points in a tight decider to secure her place in Saturday’s final.

Wozniacki, 26, will play third seed Karolina Pliskova for the title after the Czech had a walkover victory over Johanna Konta.

British number one Konta withdrew from her semi-final against Pliskova because of a back injury picked up in her quarter-final win over world number one Angelique Kerber of Germany.

Watson has a wildcard for Wimbledon and will play Ukraine’s world number 117 Maryna Zanevska in the first round.

Watson fightback ends in defeat

The Guernsey player last won a tournament in March 2016 and appeared nervous in the first set.

However, she played more aggressively in the second, breaking former world number one Wozniacki to lead 4-2.

Wozniacki called for the trainer because of an abdominal strain after the next game – but Watson kept her focus to level the match.

The British number three maintained her positive approach to break Wozniacki’s serve early in the third set but the Dane, who seemed unaffected by her injury, broke back straight away.

Wozniacki kept plugging away and had two match points in the 12th game, taking the second after Watson hit a forehand into the net.

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Wimbledon 2017: Andy Murray to start title defence against qualifier

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Wimbledon 2017 on the BBC
Venue: All England Club Dates: 3-16 July Starts: 11:30 BST
Live: Coverage across BBC TV, BBC Radio and BBC Sport website with further coverage on Red Button, Connected TVs and app.

British world number one Andy Murray will begin the defence of his Wimbledon title against a qualifier or a lucky loser on Monday.

The 30-year-old Scot, who won the tournament for a second time last year, is the top seed and will begin on Centre Court at 14:00 BST.

It means Murray could potentially face British qualifier and world number 855 Alex Ward.

Seven-time champion Roger Federer faces Alexandr Dolgopolov in the first round.

More to follow.

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Konta beats world number one Kerber despite heavy fall

Johanna Konta

Eastbourne 2017
Venue: Devonshire Park, Eastbourne Date: 26 June-1 July Coverage: Live across BBC TV, radio and online

Johanna Konta showed her Wimbledon credentials with a dramatic win over world number one Angelique Kerber after recovering from a heavy fall on match point in the Eastbourne quarter-final.

The British number one, 26, won 6-3 6-4 against Germany’s Kerber to reach the Aegon International semi-finals.

Konta took her fourth match point after a stoppage of almost 10 minutes as she needed treatment following the fall.

Compatriot Heather Watson is also through after beating Barbora Strycova.

More to follow.

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British world number 855 Ward reaches Wimbledon

Alex Ward reaches Wimbledon

Wimbledon 2017 on the BBC
Venue: All England Club Dates: 3-16 July Starts: 11:30 BST
Live: Coverage across BBC TV, BBC Radio and BBC Sport website with further coverage on Red Button, Connected TVs and app.

World number 855 Alex Ward became the only British player to come through Wimbledon singles qualifying by securing a stunning win over Russia’s Teymuraz Gabashvili.

Ward, 27, won 6-7 (3-7) 6-4 7-6 (8-6) 6-1 in the third and final round of qualifying in Roehampton.

He was given a wildcard to play in qualifying and had lost his previous seven matches before this week.

Fellow Britons Marcus Willis and Jay Clarke went out in the final round.

Ward, from Northampton, will take his place in the main draw at Wimbledon for only the second time, having received a wildcard 12 months ago.

Willis, 26, became the early story of last year’s Wimbledon by coming through six matches in pre-qualifying and qualifying, and then the first-round proper, before losing to Roger Federer on Centre Court.

Ward has taken an even more unlikely route having lost in the final round of pre-qualifying, only to be handed a wildcard into the Wimbledon qualifying event.

He had lost all four previous matches in Wimbledon qualifying.

“It just feels amazing, I’m still struggling to get my head around it,” said Ward, who slipped down the rankings from 242 last year after having six months off with a wrist injury.

“It will mean everything [to return to Wimbledon], especially having qualified. I feel like I really deserve my place there.”

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Eastbourne 2017: Johanna Konta edges past Jelena Ostapenko

Johanna Konta

Eastbourne 2017
Venue: Devonshire Park, Eastbourne Date: 26 June-1 July Coverage: Live across BBC TV, radio and online

British number one Johanna Konta passed a major test before Wimbledon as she edged past French Open champion Jeleana Ostapenko in Eastbourne.

World number seven Konta, 26, won 7-5 3-6 6-4 against her 20-year-old Latvian opponent, a surprise victor at Roland Garros earlier this month.

Konta, the fifth seed, will play world number one Angelique Kerber in the quarter-finals later on Thursday.

Compatriot Heather Watson reached the last eight with a straight-set win.

The British number three, ranked 126th in the world, won 6-4 6-3 against Russian 14th seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.

Like Konta, the 25-year-old from Guernsey will also play twice on Thursday, facing Czech Barbora Strycova later.

Rain delays earlier in the week have caused a backlog of matches, meaning all eight women’s quarter-finalists faced having to play twice on Thursday.

Konta, who will be the first British top 10-ranked woman at Wimbledon since 1984, is aiming to win her first WTA grass-court title in her home town.

The Australia-born player, whose family moved to Eastbourne when she was a teenager, held her nerve against Ostapenko to serve out for victory on her third match point.

“The scoreline and match shows it was an incredibly tough battle and very little in it,” said Konta, who has won only one main-draw match at Wimbledon.

“On both match points she played incredibly well, hit two winners.

“I knew I was trying to play the right way. I had trust that I was going to take another chance.”

Second seed Simona Halep fought back from a set down to win 6-7 (6-8) 7-6 (7-4) 7-5 against Bulgaria’s Tsvetana Pironkova in her last-16 match.

Czech third seed Karolina Pliskova, former world number one Caroline Wozniacki and Russia’s Svetlana Kuznetsova also progressed to the quarter-finals.

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Injured Murray out of final Wimbledon warm-up

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Wimbledon 2017 on the BBC
Venue: All England Club Dates: 3-16 July Starts: 11:30 BST
Live: Coverage across BBC TV, BBC Radio and BBC Sport website with further coverage on Red Button, Connected TVs and app.

Defending champion Andy Murray has pulled out of his final warm-up match before Wimbledon because of a sore hip.

The world number one, 30, was scheduled to play an exhibition match at Hurlingham Club in London on Friday.

“Sadly I won’t be ready to play at the Hurlingham, my hip is still sore and I need to rest it,” he said.

The Briton is still expected to begin the defence of his Wimbledon title on Monday, but will be short of practice heading into the Championships.

Murray has only played one grass-court match this year, suffering a shock first-round defeat by world number 90 Jordan Thompson at Queen’s.

As defending champion, the Scot is set to open on Centre Court at 13:00 BST on Monday.

Analysis – ‘Murray’s preparation hindered’

Russell Fuller, BBC tennis correspondent:

Aches and pains are nothing new for Murray, or for any professional tennis player, but the timing is inopportune.

Murray’s last practice session was a light one at the All England Club on Tuesday, and although it is possible he might still have one on Friday, he may need to spend another day on the sidelines.

My understanding is that his participation at Wimbledon is not currently in doubt, but his preparation has once again been hindered. This is a season in which injury and illness have caused much frustration.

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Wimbledon: Andy Murray's maiden win at All England Club named greatest moment

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Wimbledon 2017 on the BBC
Venue: All England Club Dates: 3-16 July Starts: 11:30 BST
Live: Coverage across BBC TV, BBC Radio and BBC Sport website with further coverage on Red Button, Connected TVs and app.

What is Wimbledon’s greatest moment?

Almost 30,000 of you chose your top three moments, from a list compiled by a panel of our tennis experts, to help us celebrate 90 years of the BBC at Wimbledon.

And the results are in.

The best moment at Wimbledon – with 64% of users placing it in their top three – is Andy Murray winning his maiden title in 2013 and ending Britain’s 77-year wait for a men’s champion.

Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer’s intense final in the dark back in 2008 came second, with Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe’s epic 1980 final coming third.

Murray wins in 2013 – what they said

Former Wimbledon champion Pat Cash: “It was one of the greatest moments in tennis history – a Briton winning Wimbledon. The atmosphere was phenomenal.

“Wherever you went, there was this tension, this expectation of “can he do it?” You can’t understand the pressure he had with 77 years of history on his back. It takes one hell of a tough kid to do that.”

BBC commentator Barry Davies: “Andy Murray does thoroughly deserve to win. It has to be a Briton winning it. And he might now do what Fred Perry did, and win it three times.”

Former British number one Sam Smith: “There are not many times when you’re watching something that you want to watch, but you can’t.

“During the final game I had to go in my study and pace about. If I’m feeling that, what must Judy Murray and his family been going through? It was the match you couldn’t bear to watch, and yet you had to.”

The top 10 moments in order

  1. Murray wins his maiden Wimbledon title (2013)
  2. Nadal beats Federer in the dark (2008)
  3. Borg beats McEnroe in final (1980)
  4. Ivanisevic wins on People’s Monday (2001)
  5. Becker wins first Wimbledon aged 17 (1985)
  6. Isner v Mahut in Wimbledon’s longest match (2010)
  7. Ashe beats Connors (1975)
  8. Wade wins first Wimbledon title (1977)
  9. Navratilova wins ninth title (1990)
  10. Serena beats Venus in final (2002)

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Wimbledon 2017: Marcus Willis beats compatriot Liam Broady in qualifying

Marcus Willis

Wimbledon qualifying
Venue: Bank of England Sports Centre, Roehampton Date: 26-29 June
Coverage: 11:00-17:00 BST on BBC Red Button and 11:00-19:00 BST on Connected TV and online

Marcus Willis is one match from qualifying for Wimbledon for the second year running after beating fellow Briton Liam Broady.

Willis, who eventually lost to Roger Federer in last year’s second round, won 7-6 (7-2) 6-7 (7-2) 6-2.

He goes on to face Ukrainian ninth seed Illya Marchenko for a place in the main draw.

Alex Ward, Jay Clarke and Katy Dunne were other British winners on day three at Roehampton.

Clarke, 18, beat Sweden’s Elias Ymer 6-4 7-6 (7-5) and Ward, 27, pulled off an upset by beating Japan’s Go Soeda, ranked 744 places higher at 111, 6-3 6-1.

It is the first time since 1999 that three British men have reached the final round of Wimbledon qualifying, with prize money of at least £35,000 guaranteed for those who make it through.

In the women’s singles, Dunne, 22, beat Serbia’s Irina Jorovic 7-5 7-5 to reach the second round.

Clarke will play Austria’s Sebastian Ofner, ranked 145 places higher than the Briton at 215, in the third and final round of qualifying, and Ward will play Teymuraz Gabashvili of Russia.

Dunne, ranked 286th, will take on Belgian second seed Alison van Uytvanck in round two.

Harriet Dart, Maia Lumsden, Gabriella Taylor, Freya Christie and Eden Silva were all beaten.

Poor weather has forced organisers to extend the qualifying event to a fifth day on Friday.

‘It’s tough playing a friend’

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Willis, 26, came through three rounds of pre-qualifying, three rounds of qualifying and the first-round proper at the All England Club last year, before losing to Federer on Centre Court.

He showed his grass-court skills once more against fellow qualifying wild card Broady, using his variety of pace and spin to good effect as he won a tight match.

Asked what it would mean to qualify, Willis said: “Everything. I’m just trying to keep my head down and prove I should be there again.”

After dominating the tie-break to clinch the first set, Willis – ranked seven places below Broady at 374 – fought back from a break down in the second.

Broady, 23, saved three match points in game 10 and forced a decider only to drop serve early in the final set with a loose game.

With the light fading, Willis broke again to lead 5-2 and converted his fourth match point at 20:06 BST.

“It was an absolute battle,” said Willis.

“I thought Liam played fantastically and it’s a shame someone had to lose. It’s a shame we had to play against each other in qualifying.

“Overall I’m very happy with the win, obviously, but it’s tough playing a friend. You have to put your feelings aside and try and win a tennis match.”

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Eastbourne: Johanna Konta breezes past Sorana Cirstea in second round

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Aegon International, Eastbourne
Venue: Devonshire Park, Eastbourne Date: 26 June -1 July
Coverage: Live across BBC TV, radio and online

British number one Johanna Konta eased past Romania’s Sorana Cirstea in the second round at Eastbourne.

Konta, the world number seven, registered an emphatic 6-2 6-2 win over 62nd-ranked Cirstea.

She will play again on Wednesday as she faces French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko on Centre Court.

Meanwhile, world number one Angelique Kerber battled past Czech Kristyna Pliskova 4-6 6-1 7-5 in a wayward match to reach the third round.

Romanian world number two Simona Halep also had to come back from a set down to beat Chinese qualifier Duan Yingying 3-6 6-3 6-2.

Another Czech player, Barbora Strycova, stunned Spain’s Garbine Muguruza 6-1 6-0 in their second round match on court four.

British number three Heather Watson will take on Russia’s Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova later on Wednesday.

Konta powers into third round

Johanna Konta

Konta, who lost the Nottingham Open final to Donna Vekic earlier this month, is searching for her first grass title on home soil.

She last met Cirstea in an ill-tempered Fed Cup singles match in April, where Konta was reduced to tears by abuse from Romania captain Ilie Nastase.

But in front of her home crowd, Konta looked composed. She struggled with her second serve as she and Cirstea traded breaks, but she ensured the first hold of the match with a fine backhand down the line.

Despite the obvious power in Cirstea’s forehand, she could not meet enough of Konta’s returns, and the Briton sent down two aces as she clinched the first set.

Cirstea’s first service game in the second set was a tight encounter as she struggled to return Konta’s speedy forehands, and Konta broke on the second attempt.

In a dominant performance, Konta won seven games in a row as she moved to 4-0 and, despite a worrying slip on the grass, she wrapped up the match in quick time.

Elsewhere, compatriot Laura Robson suffered a 6-4 2-6 6-4 defeat by Russia’s Ekaterina Alexandrova in the first round of the Aegon Southsea Trophy.

Kerber edges Pliskova encounter

Angelique Kerber

Kerber, who won the Australian and US Open in 2016, has won 20 and lost 13 of her 33 matches during a difficult year.

She was beaten in the first round of the French Open and in the fourth round at Melbourne as she defended her title, and has yet to win a WTA title in 2017.

Kerber made an inauspicious start in Eastbourne, outmuscled by the forehand of the world number 44, but her opponent lost power as the second set progressed.

Pliskova cut a frustrated figure as she lost her rhythm and also received medical attention after seemingly being stung on her left arm, which saw a sluggishness creep into her game.

The final set was error-strewn, with neither player showing any real quality, but the tension got to Pliskova first as she allowed Kerber to break through a messy game at 5-5.

Her forehand lost power and eventually Kerber served out the match to set up a third-round meeting with Spain’s Lara Arruabarrena.

“The first round is always tough and I think it was a good match for both of us. I was focusing on playing point by point and I’m happy that I’m through,” Kerber told Eurosport.

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