Jonathan Overend's Wimbledon diary
Hi everyone! My Wimbledon 2010 blog is going to be a mix of thoughts from the day's play, insights from the 5 live commentary box and a few nuggets of gossip and chat from behind the scenes. It should appear every couple of days, please send me your comments!
I watched Andy Murray win his first round match on Court One - an impressive performance after a slow start - while keeping an eye on Jamie Baker and Heather Watson on my TV monitor.
Before long Murray was left stranded as the only British player - man
or woman - in the second round of Britain's Grand Slam tournament.
It's the worst return from the first round ever and at a time when the Lawn Tennis Association is spending almost £60m a year on British tennis, do they believe such historical ignominy is acceptable?.
Jamie Baker was the only Briton apart from Andy Murray in the men's singles draw. Photo: Getty
We will find out on Wednesday morning when I intend to ask their high command that exact question.
I dashed from Court One to speak to Murray knowing that, for a few years, he has bitten his tongue on the subject of British tennis. Why should he concern himself with it when he has enough challenges of his own?
Would he have anything to say?
"The rankings are not good enough," he said on the radio, 5 Live interrupting World Cup coverage to hear his views. "The last few years it [British men's tennis] has definitely got worse, less depth even than three of four years ago."
It was a simple, damningly factual verdict.
The lack of depth in British tennis has been brutally exposed by a freelance sports reporter, not in print or on the air - but on the court. Nick Lester fully intends to take up the LTA's promise of a wild-card into a futures event after coming out of an eight-year retirement to win the British Tour event in Sutton, beating Davis Cup player Chris Eaton in the final. Lester's victory earned a guaranteed wildcard and he plans to play one of the London futures events later in the year.
The chance of practising with Andy Murray should be a dream opportunity for anyone. When the world number four phones saying "join me at my training camp", one presumes most aspiring pros would drop everything to be there in a flash. Not so last year when two British also-rans declined the invitation to accompany Murray to Miami for intensive warm-weather training. One of them sent a text at the last minute.
Who is the LTA staffer who disturbed Murray recently at the National Tennis Centre by practising cricket on the indoor courts? The all-sport enthusiast was using the tennis ball machine to "bowl" over the net before he whacked deliveries to all sides of the empty indoor centre with his cricket bat.
A letter to the Sunday Times made interesting reading last week.
"Surely the Lawn Tennis Association must realise that throwing millions away trying to find a British tennis champion is unjustified?" asked a certain James Munro from Aneres, France.
Presumably not the same James Munro who heads up the LTA's media department and spends most of his time countering this particular argument.