My brain hurts and my eyes don't appear to be functioning properly - that is the magic of Wimbledon. Another fantastic day is, finally, over. Thankfully, it should be a quiet one on Thursday, we've just got the Queen visiting, the return of Andy Murray, the small matter of Rafa, Serena, Maria and the gang, and the finale - in theory - of
the longest tennis match in history.
Let's hope Mahut and Isner remember to set their alarms. Thanks for all your texts and
today, they've kept us sane and amused, let's have another go from 0900 BST tomorrow. Happy days.
Laura Robson on Twitter:
"So impressive from these two guys. Really can't believe the match has lasted this long. Can't wait for the rest of the match tomorrow."
From Amy, xxx, via text:
"Wimbledon: sending luv & appreciation 2 mahut & isner."
2120: Isner -
"Nothing like this will ever happen again... ever. He's serving fantastic, I'm serving fantastic. That's really all there is to it. I'd like to see stats, the ace count. We both couldn't agree to play so they cancelled."
2119: Mahut -
"He's just a champ, we had to fight like we never did before. Someone has to win, we'll come back tomorrow and see. I mean, it's amazing, the crowd is just fantastic. Everyone wants to see the end, but we'll have to come back. We play for too long, I don't know how many hours."
"I'm so proud, this is the greatest advert we've ever had for our sport beyond the Roger-Rafa final," says John McEnroe
. "We don't get enough respect as a sport sometimes." Tim Henman
says they should not play on Centre Court tomorrow, Mac disagrees.
"I want to play but...." was all I could hear from Mahut as he approached the net with the score at 59-59
in the final set. Despite the crowd chanting, "We want more, we want more!" the referee says enough is enough. An incredible, incredible event with the match suspended after 10 hours
and they deserve to come back on Thursday to try and win it with relatively fresh legs.
Six-time Wimbledon champion Roger Federer
has been through his press conference and had this to say when asked about fifth-set tie-breaks: "I think it's perfect the way it is. It's unfortunate these guys are going to be a little bit tired tomorrow... and the next day, the next week, the next month
It's absolutely amazing. It's a very special match. I hope some way it's going to end. know they're maybe not loving it. This is unheard of in our game. Normally there are breaks but John's barely moving but is still able to produce good serves. I don't know if I was crying or laughing, it was too much. I can relate to it to some little degree - but this is beyond anything."
Mahut looks in charge again at 40-15 but he's pegged back to deuce and then double-faults!! Match point Isner..... Ace number 95!
Mahut holds for 59-59
Germany's Daniel Brands
knocks out seventh seed Nikolay Davydenko 7-6 7-6 6-1. I might have earlier suggested that Niko was two sets up, I can't quite remember. Nothing much makes sense any more.
Isner smiles and applauds his opponent after Mahut dives headlong for a ball he was never going to get at 0-15. The American hits his 98th ace to make it 59-58.
Mahut thumps ace number 92, I think, to make it 58-58
and there's plenty of life left in the crowd, if not on court. We get a Mexican wave and much cheering as McEnroe and Henman peer over from the roof of the Broadcast Centre, adjacent to Court 18.
Mahut has a little chat with the trainer but carries on, serving to stay in the match at 58-57
down. For all those asking about the light, I reckon they'll play until 2130 BST at least. Dig in lads.
"There's no way you can think about trying to describe something that's never happened before and will never happen again," says John McEnroe.
Au contraire, John, you can have a go. For seven hours. Mahut makes it 57-57.
Mahut holds for 56-56
, has a bit of a glare at the umpire over an overrule at the start of the following game, and then gets to 30-30. "Here we go, this it," says Tom Fordyce for at least the 20th time today. Twenty seconds later, "Game Isner. Isner leads 57-56
Isner holds to love and practically crawls back to his chair as the set moves past six and a half hours. Big John leads 56-55
but decides against a banana on this changeover as he probably doesn't have the energy to peel it.
Mahut skips around the baseline after holding for 55-55
. Mind games, like it. Isner isn't skipping anywhere but he can still move when he needs to, amazing stuff.
An equally impressive hold from Isner from 15-30 makes it 55-54
to the American. Henman Hill remains packed. "Roger Federer will be in the main interview room in five minutes," we are told. It could be a quiet one for Rog today.
From Allie, Kent, via text:
"The poor players and umpire, I've taken more comfort breaks than they've had! They must be desperate by now! I don't no who i want to win!"
ruppy99 on Twitter:
"Do you think these 2 are just holding on so they can play in front of The Queen tomorrow?"
... Mahut lunges for a world-class volley, sticks an ace down the 'T', sticks another ace down the 'T', then puts one out wide for good measure. Quite incredible. He's got to be up for French Sports Personality of the Year after this. It's 54-54.
Isner leaps out of his chair and bounds to the baseline, boosted by his seemingly impregnable 54-53
lead. Not really, he shuffles along like a man coming round after major surgery. However, the seemingly perkier Mahut fires a wild forehand over the baseline and trails 0-30....
There is other tennis going on but it all seems so half-hearted. Nikolay Davydenko
leads Daniel Brands by two sets to love, Jelena Jankovic
has levelled at one set all against Aleksandra Wozniak, and it's 53-53
in the big one.
Probably, "Caroline, fancy sticking with the live text for a bit longer?" I jest, of course, this is what it's all about and I remain pumped, stoked etc. Despite the confident howlings from my left that "this is the game", Isner recovers from 15-30 to lead 53-52.
From Dan via text:
"Piers what you have said if i told you this last set would be over 100 games long?"
It's Isner 52-51 Mahut,
and I half expect to see the umpire tucking into a plate of steak and chips as he gazes down on the neverending story. Anne Keothaovong & Mel South
are in doubles action on Court Six, while fellow Brits Naomi Cavaday & Anna Smith
are on Court One. I think.
Buntworthy on Twitter:
"Is there any theoretical limit or could this actually go on forever? It could ruin this Wimbledon. And the following ones!"
2002: Mahut gets two break points!!!
His first of the set........ Ace, smash, deuce. Isner looks almost as disappointed as Mahut as it dawns on him that it means he's got to keep playing. Humans were not designed for this. Isner 51-50 Mahut.
In a brief moment of clarity, I'm marvelling at what I'm seeing here. Mahut fires down his 77th and 78th aces of the match to make it 50-50
. "Fifty games all!" booms the umpire as the crowd stand for a prolonged ovation. I feel quite emotional. Partly for my lost youth.
My colleague Tom Fordyce returns from Court 18 with a faraway look in his eyes. "It's hell out there," he says. Apparently one of the on-court scoreboards has frozen at 47-47, which puts it well out of sync as Isner makes it 50-49. After eight and a half hours.
Svetlana Kuznetsova on Twitter:
"I feel sorry for chair unpire!!!!he probably feels the worse as he is not aloud to eat to stand up!!!!its hell for him!!!"
Now the pressure is on Isner at 30-30. Ace number 92 and he races into a 49-48 lead. Slightly delirious laughter in Commentary Box Four.
Nick, Luton, via text:
"I finished work at 5 but decided to stay at work to watch the last few games of this 5th set. I'm still here! Last one in the building and i just can't leave!"
Mahut nets a backhand for 15-30 and it feels like Championship point in the Roger-Rafa final two years ago. No matter, the Frenchman calmly sends down his 74th ace of the match on his way to holding for 48-48. I'm starting to worry about renegotioating my mortgage now, it's due next month.
Good news Britain, we have a winner! Two, in fact, as Heather Watson & Jocelyn Rae
beat Australians Casey Dellacqua and Alicia Molik 3-6 6-1 6-4 on Court Six. Elsewhere, "Game Isner. Isner leads 48-47."
Mahut pegs Isner back to 46-46 - a truly herculean effort from both men this as we pass 500 minutes on the match clock and approach five and a half hours for the fifth set. And Isner holds again for 47-46. To say he's walking back to the chair gingerly would be fair, I think.
Day 36, and John is in the diary room. He has a recurring nightmare that every time he holds serve some chirpy French fella does exactly the same and he's back to square one. Isner 46-45 Mahut. I'm going to need a shave soon.
1923: Roger Federer
beats Ilija Bozoljac 6-3 6-7 6-4 7-6, despite a cheeky Hawkeye challenge from the Serb on match point. It's smiles all round and rapturous applause for the Swiss as he leaves.
Lots of people asking if the umpire is allowed a 'comfort break'. I would imagine they're a hardy bunch who would not crumble under the pressure. I do expect to see Mohamed Lahyani wheeled straight off court and into the locker rooms at the end though, it could be a bit dicey getting down from that chair. Isner 45-44 Mahut.
1913: Novak Djokovic
beats Tayor Dent 7-6 6-1 6-4, and can get back in the locker room to carry on watching Isner v Mahut. The Frenchman trails 44-43 and is about to serve to stay in the match. For the 39th time, I think. And my apologies for not noticing that Britain's Heather Watson & Jocelyn Rae
are in action on Court Six against Aussies Casey Dellacqua and Alicia Molik, and it's one set all.
Katie O'Brien on Twitter:
"You've got to feel sorry for the players following this match. I think I would've given up warming up by now."
Well, the referee's office have just informed us that Isner's doubles match with Sam Querrey due on Court 10 has been cancelled for the day. It's big Sam who's the victim in all this. Isner has stormed into a 43-42 lead. On serve. I'm not sure he isn't crying a little bit at the changeover.
Federer saves three break points and then swipes a magnificent forehand pass across Bozoljac at the net for 3-3 in the fourth. Isner leads Mahut 42-41 as we move past seven and a half hours. The latest suggestions I'm getting are for food parcels to be sent in for the Court 18 crowd.
From Nick in Irvind via text:
"They're putting the Mahut v Isner match on DVD. It'll be a box set mind!"
1853: Tomas Berdych
beats Benjamin Becker 7-5 6-3 6-4. Mahut plays a cheeky drop shot on game point and, not surprisingly, Isner is not too sprightly chasing it down - 41-41.
I'm told that Taylor Dent has twice hit 148mph serves in his match on Centre Court against Novak Djokovic to set a new Wimbledon record. Andy Roddick holds the world record at 155mph. It's a shame they don't have speed guns at Dulwich Park because I reckon I've gone close. It doesn't have to go in, does it?
Nonsense, Laura, there's plenty left in this one. Ace number 81 gets Isner out of a spot of bother from deuce and he strolls back to the chair, surely confident that a 40-39 lead will do the job. The shadow is creeping further and further across Court 18. I'm told this has something to do with the sun going down.
Federer wraps up the second set against Bozoljac, Djoko is two sets up on Dent, Berdych is in an equally strong position against Becker, and it's 39-39 in the longest match in the history of the world.
Wimbledon on Twitter:
"Ivo Karlovic's aces record tumbles. John Isner has just dished up his 79th winning serve."
There is a sense of delirium in Commentary Box Four at the moment, we are living Isner-Mahut. Suggestions that both men should be given laptops so they can check their emails at the next changeover, and we can't be far off a hairdresser being called to Court 18. It's 38-38.
Mahut holds to love, Isner responds - incredible effort. Seven hours and 15 minutes for the match, fours hours and 21 minutes for the set, and it's 38-38.
You've got to hand it to these boys, they must have been to a spin class or something because they're not flagging too badly. Mahut holds to love to make it 36-36. They would definitely have to stop at 100 because it would clock the scoreboard, so the end is in sight. Oh, and Federer has broken to lead Bozoljac in the third, and Djokovic is a set and a break up on Dent.
Lleyton Hewitt is heading off to find a television set and watch Australia against Serbia in the World Cup. So it's party time round at Lleyton's? "No, I won't have any beers. No, not tonight." Probably best.
It's 34-34 and Mahut, who has not had a single break point in a final set that has lasted four hours, gets to deuce, sets up a tantalising backhand and.... smacks it in the net. The Frenchman falls to the ground in disbelief, and moments later Isner's 78th ace of the match whistles by. The American leads 35-34 and is one ace from equalling Ivo Karlovic's record for a single match.
dungeekin on Twitter:
"Mahut & Isner to settle the match with Rock, Paper, Scissors. Trouble is, it'll be best of 135."
From Sarah via text:
"Well, Henman, Murray et al might have put us through it sometimes, but at least they never did this to us! Come on Isner! Although all credit to both!"
I need another pair of eyes, but Caroline Cheese will have to do. Bozoljac has only gone and taken the second set tie-break against Federer to level it up. "Why isn't he in the top 50?" muses my colleague. Again, I point you to his wikipedia entry.
We have two match points on Court 18! I never thought this moment would come. At ease everyone, Mahut comes up with a nerveless volley and a big serve.... and it's 33-33. Personally, I want this to go on and on. Not sure the referee's office agree though, as Murray & Marray's match has now been cancelled.
A quick update from elsewhere - Federer leads Bozoljac by a set and 6-5, Berdych leads Becker by a set and 2-1, Djokovic trails Dent 5-4 on serve, and Britain's Chris Eaton & Dominic Inglot
beat Fabio Fognini & Kevin Ullyett 6-7 (7-9) 7-5 6-4 7-6 (7-4). Hang on, drama on 18...
There are some very red faces out on Court 18, send sunblock immediately. Mahut leans on the net and chuckles after one point in the first visible acknowledgement from either man that they are involved in a ridiculous game of tennis. Ridiculous but record breaking as it becomes officially the longest tennis match in history
when it goes past six hours and 34 minutes. A 'shock' graphic will have to do the job.
The referee's office almost certainly follow this page as Jamie Murray's match is swiftly moved to Court Six at 1800 BST. He and Jonny Marray are up against top seeds Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic. Meanwhile, Isner storms into a 32-31 lead. On serve.
po8crg on Twitter:
"If Isner/Mahut gets to 33-all then it will break the number of games in the famous Gonzales/Pasarell match in in 1969."
And so it goes on... 30-30 now on Court 18. They'll need to come out and cut the grass in a minute.
From Heather via text:
"Win or lose, Mahut can teach his football colleagues a lesson or two in grit and determination!"
Jamie is, of course, scheduled last on Court 18 for his doubles match with Jonathan Marray. Chin up, Jamie, Isner and Mahut are 29-29 and you always get a break in the 59th game. Then it's just a ladies' singles and men's singles, and you're on! We do have a winner on Court Six, where Thiemo de Bakker
has beaten Santiago Giraldo 16-14 in the fifth. See you bright and early tomorrow, Thiemo. Assuming Isner and Mahut aren't still going.
Federer looks set for a rather easier afternoon than on Monday as he takes the first set 6-3 against Bozoljac, a dead net cord on set point raising a smile from both men. Lovely. Novak Djokovic and Taylor Dent have just started on Centre, and I should mention that Britons Chris Eaton and Dominic Inglot lead Fabio Fognini and Kevin Ullyett by two sets to one on Court Six.
"There's so much going on right now: the World Cup, Isner's match... I've been trying to dabble a little bit in all of them," says Andy Roddick
after his win over Llodra. The fifth set alone of Isner and Mahut has last over three hours, with just the one break point for Isner. I've just realised that the winner will face Giraldo or De Bakker, who are currently at 12-12 in the decider. That should be an energetic encounter.
Mahut serves out to love and it's 25-25 in the fifth. Just the five hours and 51 minutes gone in this match. Isner to serve. De Bakker and Giraldo are 11-11 in the fifth on Court 14, the lightweights.
1700: Kim Clijsters on British tennis:
"You have the best facilities you can have here in England. Most of the girls who make it never had that when they were younger, when they were growing up. So I think the biggest thing that I can think of, is don't give it to them that early. I don't think there's one point where you can say 'this is what we're doing right'. You need the whole system, it's the whole group around, the player, the parents, the whole infrastructure that's important. There's not one difference that Belgium has compared to England. You probably took most of our coaches already so that didn't work."
1656: Venus Williams
defeats Ekaterina Makaraova 6-0 6-4 on Centre Court. Novak Djokovic and Taylor Dent are up next.
Wimbledon on Twitter:
"John Isner v Nicolas Mahut 5th set longest in games in Wimbledon history (48th game) & longest men's singles match at 5-hours 30-mins. Another 39 minutes and Isner v Mahut will be the longest match (doubles or singles) in Wimbledon history (6-hrs, 9-mins)."
1641: Gael Monfils
defeats Karol Beck 6-4 6-4 6-7 6-4 on Court Two, meaning it's time for Tomas Berdych and Benjamin Becker to put the travel scrabble away.
Some stats from Isner and Mahut on Court 18 - it's 23-23 in the fifth, Mahut has 53 aces and 246 points to Isner's 59 aces and 244 points. It's making Bakker and Giraldo's 8-8 in the fifth seem quite tame, pull your fingers out lads.
From Dan in London via text:
"Mahut won an epic qualifier over our own Bogdanovic 24-22. Anyone would think he likes doing this."
The big guns are out and about. Roger Federer
walks onto Court One, smiling and waving. Ilija Bozoljac looks pretty happy with life too. Not surprised if his wikipedia entry is accurate. Rog appears to have discarded the chunky knitwear as the temperature approaches 30C but still has a tracksuit top on. Venus is cruising at 6-1 2-1 on Centre.
Apologies for the slow updates, seems to be a busy day on the interweb. The good news is that Isner and Mahut are trundling along at 21-21 in the fifth set. What's the best way to decide this one? I think a winner-takes-all game of hide and seek.
From Sarah, Liverpool, via text:
"The Isner v Mahut match is gearing up to beat the Roddick v El Aynaoui 2003 quarter final at the Australian Open and that was EPIC!!"
FromJ amie, Manchester, via text:
"Wishing I was at home watching Isner-Mahut match - sounds amazing :( Stuck at work where they're watching some football instead.."
I have bad news for Serena Williams, all that curtsey practising might have been a waste of time. Thursday's order of play is out and, as expected, Andy Murray and Jarkko Nieminen will open Centre Court proceedings at 1300 BST in front of the Queen. Caroline Wozniacki and Kai-Chen Chang will meet in the second match, before Rafael Nadal takes on Robin Haase. I believe the Queen will meet some players, past and present, at some stage so hopefully Serena will get her chance then.
1607: Lleyton Hewitt
moves into the third round when his opponent Evgeny Korolev retires with the Aussie leading 6-4 6-4 3-0, meaning Court One is about to welcome Roger Federer. And Ilija Bozoljac.
Mahut slams down his 48th ace of the match to level at 18-18 in the decider against Isner on Court 18. For any younger readers, this is what Wimbledon used to be like. I should mention that Dutch up-and-comer Thiemo de Bakker and Colombia's Santiago Giraldo are 3-3 in the fifth on Court 14. Great stuff for the spectators but this is not the day you'd choose to play a five-setter.
Monfils cannot close it out as Beck takes the third set tie-break, leaving the Frenchman to chunter at the umpire on the changeover.
Venus has made a swift start against Makarova,
while Hewitt leads Korolev by two sets and an early break.
Wimbledon on Twitter:
"John Isner has just broken Wimbledon ace record. Has served up 52 v Mahut. Mahut no slouch either with 42 for the match. 400 points played"
Venus and Makarova are knocking up in front of me, while out on Court 18 it's now 16-16 in the fifth between Isner and Mahut. Hewitt is closing in on a two-set lead over Korolev on Court oO
1534: Andy Roddick
beats Michael Llodra 4-6 6-4 6-1 7-6, and he'll be delighted to have got through that one. He departs and we wait for Venus and Ekaterina Makarova to join us on a sweltering Centre Court.
Feliciano Lopez is undergoing lengthy treatment to his left leg on Court 12 - he's just had it sprayed and now appears to have blue gaffer tape around his knee. It won't be much fun getting that off later. The Spaniard remains 3-0 up on Berankis in the third.
Monfils sees a couple of break points go begging and remains two sets up and on serve at 3-3 in the third against Beck. A murmur goes around Centre Court as I type....
It must be the news that Jurgen Melzer
has beaten Viktor Trocki 6-3 in the fifth. Roddick leads Llodra by two sets to one on Centre Court, and Korolev has broken Hewitt to lead 2-0 in the second on Court One.
One contented looking fellow on Court 18 munches on a sandwich, safe in the knowledge that his scalp is protected from the fierce sun by the newspaper he is balancing expertly on his head. It could be there a while yet as Mahut makes it 11-11 against Isner in the decider after four hours and eight minutes of match time, although they resumed at the start of the fifth.
A bit of a surprise out on Court 17 as Mardy Fish
makes an early exit with a four-set defeat by Germany's Florian Mayer
. And Mardy's mate John Isner is still battling away with Nicolas Mahut on 18, leading 10-9 on serve in the decider.
jamesaldous on Twitter:
"England have beaten the Aussies in a cricket ODI and a Rugby Union Test in Australia. Hardly a summer of doom and gloom!"
I've checked the rules and apparently three sets is enough for a win, so I can confirm that Britain's Delgado & Goodall
have beaten Almagro & Ventura 5-7 7-6 6-1 6-3 in the men's doubles. And here comes Aussie battler Lleyton Hewitt onto Court One to face Evgeny Korolev. Lleyton will want to race through this to catch the second half of the England match, surely.
1430: Kim Clijsters
defeats Karolina Sprem 6-3 6-2 and will play Shenay Perry or Maria Kirilenko next. Fellow Belgian Justine Henin
earlier beat Kristina Barroi, and said: "I really don't see myself as one of the favourites. I see Wimbledon differently now, I've opened my eyes. Usually I've done well at French and I've come here with a lot of pressure, as the world number one. Now it's different. I can see it's a beautiful court and the atmosphere is fantastic, you feel the passion for the game."
We may be teetering on the edge of a sporting summer of gloom in the UK but there is still hope. Things are already a lot gloomier in France, but free from a coach who believes in horoscopes and a having to share a room with Nicolas Anelka, Gael Monfils has confidently snaffled the first set against Karol Beck on Court Two. And
Roddick finally gets the break to level at one set all against Llodra.
BBC Sport's David Ornstein on Twitter:
"Andy Murray falls heavily while playing football tennis at Wimbledon. Stays on floor motionless for a few mins. Physio Andy Ireland runs on court. Little chats going on betwn Murray's fitness trainers & physio. Will be interesting to know if he injured something in that fall. Seems fine."
From Neil via text:
"At about 2.45 I am going to the office canteen turn the television to Wimbledon and throw away the remote. Will i be unpopular?"
I've been distracted by my annual quandary as to whether anything 'vanilla flavoured' can really be considered a) a yoghurt, and b) healthy. Away from that drama,
is on course to join fellow Belgian Justine Henin in the third round as she leads Karolina Sprem by a set and a break on Court One.
I would like to find someone else to blame for the previous entry, and when I do I'll make sure to pass on their name. Delgado & Goodall
were serving for the set, not the match, this being a Grand Slam and all. And it was 5-1. The good news is they took it and the Brits lead by two sets to one. Meanwhile,
Roddick is in a real battle on Centre as he trails Llodra by a set,
and John Isner and Nicolas Mahut have just taken to Court 18 to resume their match from last night. It's the start of the fifth in that one.
Afternoon all, refresh your page and you can confirm I am no Cheese. I trust the butterflies are fighting for stomach space with that large knot of tension on this huge afternoon for British sport? Well, I'm about to put you out of your misery as Delgado & Goodall are serving for the match at 5-0 in the third against Almagro & Ventura.....
By Caroline Cheese
BBC Sport at Wimbledon
Kim Clijsters wraps up the first set 6-3 against former quarter-finalist Karolina Sprem. Delgado/Goodall are 3-0 up in the third set against Almagro/Ventura. Piers Newbery will bring you the rest of their march to victory. Thanks for all your poems/haikus. I'd show them to the official Wimbledon poet, but I don't want to cause any tears.
From anon via text:
"Another haiku: a nation's hopes raised, once more dashed by foreign stars. There's always snooker."
Panic over. Justine Henin
wins two games in a row to wrap up a 6-3 7-5 win over Kristina Barrois. She'll face Nadia Petrova or Yung-Jan Chan in the third round before a possible last-16 meeting with fellow Belgian Kim Clijsters. And hello naysayers! Josh Goodall and Jamie Delgado take the second set against Almagro/Ventura on the tie-break.
Strange turn of events on Court Two where Justine Henin has been pegged back to 5-5 by Kristina Barrois in the second set. Perhaps not so strange: Jamie Delgado and Josh Goodall failed to serve out the second set against Ventura/Almagro and they're into a tie-break. I think I know how that story goes.
Here's some scores on the doors especially for Bruce: Henin a game away from victory; Shahar Peer and Angelique Kerber at a set each; Delgado/Goodall are a game away from the second set.
1312: Bruce Forsyth
puts his shades on and pats down 'his hair' as the action gets under way on Centre. After the disappointments of the last couple of days, the Royal Box is packed with celebs today. Jimmy Tarbuck and June Whitfield
will be teaming up with Forsyth to provide the laughs. Albert Roux
will no doubt share some cooking tips.
During the warm-up, just saw Andy Roddick play a high backhand volley, which looked very much like the one he missed so crucially when leading 6-4 in the second-set tie-break against Roger Federer last year. He got it spot on this time, just 12 months too late.
Just heard that Roger Federer's opponent Ilija Bozoljac
is more well-known in Serbia for his love life than his tennis. If Wikipedia is to be believed, the 24-year-old has got a Miss Canada and a Playboy model on his CV. One of the game's 'characters' then.
Jamie Delgado and Josh Goodall drop the first set against Almagro/Ventura 7-5. Well, it was close at least. Justine Henin has broken at the start of the second set. Crowd filling up in front of me, hats being put on, suncream being applied. Ten minutes until Michael Llodra and Andy Roddick step on to Centre Court.
From Alice, Oxford, via text:
"Here's my haiku effort - clean green and bright white, rhythmic bok bok bok of balls, tennis conquers all."
Israel's 13th seed Shahar Peer wins the first set of the day, 6-3 against Angelique Kerber. Justine Henin isn't far behind, holding to love for a 6-3 first set against Kristina Barrois.
From Dave, London, via text:
"In Wimbledon, everyone hears us dream. The sound of action comes a distant second. If we could only make it really seem, to kids computer-glued and sullen, that in another place, another time, a greater glory beckons."Stop... I'm welling up...
From Alex in Harborne, via text:
"Re earlier text (above 1159 entry): Fine. I will express it as a rhyming haiku. 'My 6 year old son. Wants tennis lessons for fun. Can't find em in Brum'."
Early scores on the doors: Henin already into a 3-1 lead over Barrois. Everyone else pretty much level pegging, including Brits Jamie Delgado and Josh Goodall against Spanish pair Nicolas Almagro and Santiago Ventura.
From Roman, London, via text:
"Re 1111: Here's a haiku for you - Scorched summer grass courts, Cool cream covered strawberries, Slovenia who?"
Anne Keothavong on Twitter:
"Will be at Wimbledon again soon. Fourth match on today for dubs, hope to watch England win first though :-)"
From Tom, Chelmsford, via text:
"Re 1111: 'Wimbledon is here. Murray is our only hope. Optimistic fools.' That's my haiku, did you enjoy?"Yes
Tim Henman strolls on to Centre Court wearing a dark suit. He must be roasting. It's at least a million degrees out there.
Curses. I was so busy looking at that picture of Feliciano Lopez, I missed who won the first point of the day. I reckon it was Viktor Troicki, who's already a game up against Jurgen Melzer.
From Douglas from Tynemouth:
"Who needs the World Cup, we've got the tennis. Hopefully Murray, compared to England, will show a bit more menace."
From Alex in Harborne, via text:
"My six-year-old wants tennis lessons in Birmingham and I am struggling to find them."Is that a poem? Not sure...
mum, who has provided a month's supply (which will be gone in a few hours) of flapjacks just in time for the start of play. Commentary Box Four is happy.
From John R in Welburn, via text:
"Re 1111: shiver me timbers, day three at Wimbers, nothing surprising, only Muzza surviving!"
From Paddy via text:
"Re 1111: Suits and blazers, cocktails and canapes; no mention of tennis, at the LTA..."
From Bryan on a train, via text:
"Re 1111: British tennis in the modern age (alt title: Murray's on telly again) 'Murray - worry - woolly - wally - welly - telly'."
Also in action at 1200 BST today: Anastasia Rodionova, who now plays for Australia, with her sister Arina, who still plays for Russia. Anastasia didn't win many fans in the singles yesterday, and not just because she knocked out the lovely Anne Keothavong. When she wasn't yelling at herself for her (54) errors, she was taking it out on the poor umpire. Rodionova was chucked out of the Cincinnati Open in 2007 for smashing a ball into the crowd. She's not bothered what people think though. "The end result was I won the match and I'm really happy about it."
From Stu via text:
"Re 1111: Swish, miss; thwack, out. Another Brit player on wrong end of a rout."
If you're in the queue hoping to catch a glimpse of 2007 finalist Marion Bartoli,
I bring devastating news. Her opponent Petra Martic has pulled out of their second-round match, handing the Frenchwoman a walkover. Martic, you may recall, beat Elena Baltacha in the first round. Clearly, the effort was too much.
From Cogen from 606, via text:
"Re 1020: I had a great time on court One yesterday! I'd already seen Nadal and Soderling before at the World Tour Finals, so I chose Court One and was glad to be able to see the charisma of Tsonga followed by my favourite guy and my favourite girl, Andy and Caroline! Wonderful line up and I thank the organisers."
Great effort on the poems so far, keep them coming. That last tweeter had another effort ('Rafa Nadal, he hails from Spain. He's won the French Open again'), which I didn't like as much because it didn't have any made-up words in it. Still, I'm pretty sure the real Wimbledon poet,
will be worried right now...
One hour until play begins on the outside courts, two hours until they hit the ball on Centre and Court One. Justine Henin is among those in action early doors, up against Kristina Barrois on Court Two. The fact that Henin has been on Court 12 and now Two in her first appearance at Wimbledon for three years, I do find a bit odd, by the way.
From sparkyfresh on Twitter:
"Re 1012: How about an ode to Sharapova: Twack screech twack screech, win the match, screech, go back to Florida and lie on the beach..."Excellent effort. Keep them coming
Phil in London texts to ask where to go if you've got a ground pass today. Funny you should ask, Phil, because it's time for Cheesy's Outside Court Golden Ticket
and today, it's an antidote to the doom and gloom surrounding British tennis. Over on Court Six, get your Union Jacks out as four British doubles duos take to the grass. Delgado/Goodall, Eaton/Inglot, Rae/Watson and Keothavong/South. Please don't blame me if they all lose...
ACETennisMag on Twitter:
"A lot of men in suits standing around looking v worried outside the press centre. Why? Testing the cordons for the Queen's visit Wimbledon."
From Steve, Clapham via text:
"Hey Caroline. We had the joy of having the resident poet serenade us with 'Thwok' on the Hill yesterday while sipping champagne. One of the more surreal Wimbledon experiences!"I might pop out to the hill later and roadtest my ode to British tennis... (see 1012)
From David T, Edinburgh, via text:
"Re 1003: That Wimbledon poem reminds me of Baldrick's poem from Blackadder about the German guns, 'Boom boom boom boom, boom boom boom! Boom boom, boom boom...' Can you guess the last line?!"That one could work for the great Boris Becker as well... Anyone else want to have a go?
Now then, there's a few of you perplexed about the decision to put Andy Murray (yesterday) and Roger Federer (today) on Court One, but I'm not sure it's that surprising. The order of play committee tries to give all the top seeds a go on Centre during the first week, on the basis that the likes of Fed and Murray will dominate it later on. Novak Djokovic is on Centre again today after his late night under-the-roof finish on Monday, but his match against Taylor Dent could be a close one.
From Ank, via text:
"In the queue since 5:30 am and just managed to get Court Two tickets. Everyone here going for Court One tickets as Roger is on Court One. Wonder why he was put on Court One."
If I'd known you could just make up words, I'd have had a bash at poetry a long time ago. Here's my ode to British tennis: "Hrrrrrmmmmmeeeurgh." Simple but effective. Where do I apply to be 2011 Wimbledon poet?
In another 'only at Wimbledon' moment, the tournament appointed an official poet this year. I confess the news didn't exactly fill me with cheer - but that was until I saw
his latest effort in the Guardian this morning.
Entitled Thwok, it begins: "bounce bounce bounce bounce, thwackety wackety zingety ping, hittety backety pingety zang, wack, thwok, thwack, pok..." Get the idea?
BBC Sport's David Ornstein on Twitter:
"Free strawberries on the walk from Southfields tube station to Wimbledon - the gloom hanging over British tennis has just been lifted!"Something for the LTA to think about there. Free strawberries for all
From David, Gillingham, via text:
"Don't worry! There will be a British girl on court on Ladies' Final day. My daughter will be tossing the coin! What about using the flag icon?"To hell with it, I'm going with two flags
Former British number one and BBC commentator
Tim Henman was impressed by Murray's performance, after a dodgy few months for the Scot.
"Coming into Wimbledon I spoke of how important it was for him to dictate play and be the aggressor," said Henman. "I wanted to see him achieving a high first-serve percentage, dictating from the baseline and getting that backhand working like we know it can. For the majority of the match he played offensive and aggressive tennis, kept his first-serve percentage well above 60%, looked to dictate from the baseline and got his backhand firing consistently."
Let's focus on the positives. In his latest
exclusive! column for the BBC website,
Andy Murray, who showed flashes of his very best form in
his first-round win over Jan Hajek,
says he's looking forward to playing in front of the Queen on Thursday. "That's probably not going to happen too often in my career, if ever again, so I want to be prepared as best as possible and hopefully I'll put on a good performance. I'll be practising my bowing in front of the mirror on Wednesday night!"
BBC Sport's Tom Fordyce on Twitter:
"Another scorcher at Wimbles. Preparing for A-Rod/Venus text commentaries, knowing that almost no-one will be reading from 3pm onwards. Sacrificial."
On Radio Wimbledon, they're wondering whether football is the reason not enough kids play tennis in Britain. Just as well we rule the world in football then... Oh wait...
In his blog, BBC 5 live's Jonathan Overend
has promised to seek some answers from British tennis bigwigs this morning, so we can look forward to lots of positive spin no doubt. Yesterday, Jonathan
asked Andy Murray for his thoughts.
"The rankings are not good enough," said the world number four. "The last few years it [British men's tennis] has definitely got worse, less depth even than three or four years ago."
Not such a good morning if you're British tennis-related. Andy Murray is the
only home player through to the second round,
Britain's worst ever Wimbledon in its 133-year history. A failure of impressive proportions. Furrowed brows all round at the LTA then, and they may be grateful that the small matter of England's crunch match against Slovenia has kept tennis off the front pages today.
Hello, a very, very good morning to you. It's a beautifully sunny day at Wimbledon. Again. Getting kinda boring now isn't it?