Trailblazer Liam Broady insists he has nothing to fear from second-round opponent David Goffin after the British wildcard sealed a shock Wimbledon victory with a stunning comeback on his grand slam singles debut yesterday.
The 21-year-old, who is ranked 182nd in the world, was the first Briton in action at this year’s championships and recovered from a two-set deficit to dispatch Bosnia-born Australian Marinko Matosevic 5-7, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-3.
His reward for overpowering a player 44 places ahead of him in the world rankings is a showdown with Belgium’s 16th seed Goffin, who beat Argentina’s Horacio Zeballos in straight sets.
Broady’s previous best grand slam showing was at this year’s Australian Open, where he reached the third qualifying round, and victory has left the British No6 – ranked 470th in the world rankings at the start of 2014 – intent on maintaining his upward trajectory.
“I don’t know if he’s known me for years, but I’ve known Goffin for years,” said Broady. “I think I’ll be comfortable going on court with him. It’s not like I’m going to be stepping on court with [World No1] Novak Djokovic.
“At the same time he’s obviously a fantastic player. But it’s a reward. I’ve got nothing to lose. He’s got everything to lose in a sense.
“I didn’t feel like I played my best tennis today, but I still came through. That gave me even more confidence. I’m not sure how much I believed I could win a round at Wimbledon before today, even going into the match. I’m hoping it will push me on and give me a bit more fire to want to get back here.”
There was no such joy for British No2 Johanna Konta, who suffered her fourth successive first-round loss at the All England Club when slipping to a straight-sets defeat to five-time Major winner Maria Sharapova.
Konta moved up to 126th in the world rankings after beating two top-20 players at Eastbourne last week, but was little match for fourth seed Sharapova, the 2004 champion, and succumbed 6-2, 6-2. British No3 Naomi Broady, who had earlier watched younger brother Liam stun Matosevic, suffered a similar fate, going down 7-6 (7-5), 6-3 to Colombia’s Mariana Duque-Marino.
World No3 Andy Murray, meanwhile, begins his quest for a third career grand slam today when the Scot, who claimed the title in 2013, takes on Russian-born world No58 Mikhail Kukushkin of Kazakhstan.
Murray arrived at Wimbledon in prime form, having complemented his maiden clay-court titles last month with a stellar showing at the French Open, followed by victory at the Aegon Championships at Queen’s Club.
Fellow Britons Kyle Edmund, James Ward, Brydan Klein and Aljaz Bedene are also in first-round action today, as are Laura Robson and Heather Watson, who was tied at one set all with France’s Caroline Garcia when bad light halted play last night.
Wimbledon Spy: All England Shorts
Hewitt bids final SW19 farewell
Former champion Lleyton Hewitt fought to the bitter end of his farewell Wimbledon appearance but was unable to recapture former glories against Finland’s Jarkko Nieminen. The 34-year-old, who won the SW19 title in 2002, lost a five-set thriller 3-6, 6-3, 4-6, 6-0, 11-9. Nieminen, 33, is also playing at the All England Club for the final time and his victory set up a second round tie with world No1 Novak Djokovic.
Djokovic through in straight sets
Top seed Novak Djokovic began the defence of his Wimbledon title with a straight-sets victory over Germany’s world No33 Philipp Kohlschreiber on Centre Court. Eight-time grand slam winner Djokovic was far from his fluent best but decisively broke unseeded Kohlschreiber in the 10th game of each set to overpower his rival 6-4, 6-4, 6-4. Fourth seed Stan Wawrinka, meanwhile, beat Portugal’s Joao Sousa in straight sets.
Grand slam hunt on for Williams
World No1 Serena Williams continued her charge towards a grand slam of titles in 2015 with a straight-sets victory over Wimbledon debutant Margarita Gasparyan. Despite trailing 3-1 in the opening set, Williams stormed back to win 6-4, 6-1. Williams has won the Australian Open and French Open this year.
Order of play
▀ Bertens v Kvitova 
▀ Dzumhur v Federer 
▀ Kukushkin v Murray 
▀ Bellucci v Nadal 
▀ Cepelova v Halep 
▀ Berdych  v Chardy