The only Canadian man in the Wimbledon qualifying gets under way Monday.
Nobody’s easy. But Frank Dancevic certainly didn’t get the best first-round matchup at Wimbledon qualifying, which begins Monday at the Bank of England grounds in Roehampton (i.e. the park with lines painted on the grass).
Dancevic drew No. 31 seed Michael Berrer, a tough veteran lefty.
The 34-year-old, ranked No. 139 but once in the top 50, is 3-1 against Dancevic, whose only win against hi came back in 2006. Worse, they played in the qualifying at Stuttgart two weeks ago, and Berrer pulled out a third-set tiebreak win.
The rest of Dancevic’s draw doesn’t seem nearly as bad – to say the least. But he’s got to get there. The Canadian has a knack for qualifying at majors – or did. He lost in the first round of qualies at both the Australian Open and Roland Garros this year.
(No, I don’t know why they don’t put first names or seeds – take it up with them!)
Dancevic has been outside the top 200 for the last two weeks. On the positive side, that’s exactly where he was a year ago, but he was back inside the top 100 by July. He’s first up at 11 a.m. London time (6 a.m. EDT) Monday.
The state of Pospisil
The Canadian, who will head into Wimbledon defending his doubles title with American Jack Sock, was just beginning a third set against Marcel Granollers of Spain at the ATP event in Nottingham when he retired.
It appeared to be his back, which is really bad news.
We’ll look into this on Monday.
That would be Jürgen Melzer, 34 and his little brother Gerald, 24. It’s not totally surprising that the two, separated by a decade, have never met before (although there might always have been a chance in a tournament held in Austria).
They have played doubles a few times together, in Kitzbuhel the last two years and in lower-level tournaments earlier on, when the younger Melzer was just a teenager.
Slam winners in qualies
When you’ve won majors in doubles, although not together, it’s got to be pretty humbling to find yourself in the doubles qualifying at Wimbledon.
Philipp Petzschner, who has struggled to come back from injury the last year or two, won Wimbledon in 2010 and the U.S. Open in 2011 with Jurgen Melzer.
Jonathan Erlich, now 38, won the Australian Open in 2008 with Israeli compatriot Andy Ram.
But they are ranked No. 89 and No. 113, respectively, in doubles at the moment so to Roehampton they go.
Final wild cards awarded
Unlike years ago, when Wimbledon allocated pretty much every wild card it had, many to rather obscure Brits, they leave a few on the table now.
But Laura Robson got one. Here’s the list of free passes this year. They don’t do the reciprocal wild-card thing with the other Slams.
1. BROADY, Liam (GBR)
2. EBDEN, Matthew (AUS)
3. EDMUND, Kyle (GBR)
4. HEWITT, Lleyton (AUS)
5. KLEIN, Brydan (GBR)
6. KUDLA, Denis (USA)
7. MAHUT, Nicolas (FRA)
8. WARD, James (GBR)
1. BROADY, Naomi (GBR)
2. KONTA, Johanna (GBR)
3. KONTAVEIT, Anett (EST)
4. OSTAPENKO, Jelena (LAT)
5. ROBSON, Laura (GBR)
1. BAMBRIDGE, Luke (GBR) and BROADY, Liam (GBR)
2. CORRIE, Edward (GBR) and EDMUND, Kyle (GBR)
3. EBDEN, Matthew (AUS) and WARD, James (GBR)
4. HEWITT, Lleyton (AUS) and KOKKINAKIS, Thanasi (AUS)
5. MARRAY, Jonathan (GBR) and NIELSEN, Frederik (DEN)
6. SKUPSKI, Ken (GBR) and SKUPSKI, Neal (GBR)
1. BROADY, Naomi (GBR) and WEBLEY-SMITH, Emily (GBR)
2. KONTA, Johanna (GBR) and SANCHEZ, Maria (USA)
3. RAE, Jocelyn (GBR) and SMITH, Anna (GBR)