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Krajicek prepares to return to Wimbledon

Richard Krajicek at Wimbledon in 2011
by Alexandra Willis
Thursday 7 June 2012

In 1996, Richard Krajicek pulled off an upset as infamous as Robin Soderling's over Rafael Nadal at the 2009 French Open. He upset one of the undisputed Kings of Centre Court, Pete Sampras, the American's only defeat at Wimbledon between 1993 and 2001, and went on to claimhis one and only Grand Slam title on the All England Club's lawns. 

It was to be his finest hour, one the curly-haired Dutchman, who had a serve that thundered like Thor, admits he would never take for granted. 

"A miniature version of the Wimbledon trophy is still in my living room," Krajicek said. "It's the only trophy I have which is still in my vision, the rest is in storage!"

These days a regular competitor among the venerables of the game, both at the Grand Slam invitational events and on the ATP Champions Tour, Krajicek is returning to Wimbledon to make his first foray into the commentary box, as part of the BBC's Radio 5 Live team for The Championships 2012. 

While he will be watching, and pronouncing, the virtues of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, Krajicek also has his eye on Andy Murray, three times a semi-finalist at SW19. 

"I really like Andy," Krajicek said. "He's a great player and, for me, the way he played last year in the first set and a half against Nadal [in the semis] showed that he has the right level. Tennis-wise he doesn't have to fear anyone, they have to fear him actually."

Could it be Murray who does what Krajicek did in 1996, and upsets the apple cart? Or will it be another lesser-known male, someone else to spring from nowhere and finally break the stranglehold of the Big Three. 

We shall have to wait and see. Krajicek will be watching. 


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