Qualifying begins: 26 June
The Draw: 30 June
Pre-event Press Conferences: 1 & 2 July
Order of Play: 2 July
Championships begin: 3 July
COME BACK FOR LIVE SCORES & LIVE BLOG FROM 26 JUNE
Kyle Edmund finally broke his Wimbledon men’s singles duck by winning a match at the fifth attempt as he overcame British qualifier Alex Ward 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-1 on No.3 Court and then looked forward to a tricky clash with Gael Monfils, the French No.15 seed.
It was a much-needed win, not only for Edmund but also for British tennis on a day when wild cards Katie Boulter, James Ward and Brydan Klein all fell at the first hurdle. Alex Ward, no relation, had fought his way into the main draw from the qualifying tournament.
Edmund came into the all-British match having failed to get past the first round at Wimbledon in four attempts and when he took the second set it was the first time he had won a set at The Championships. The world No.60, who is now nine places below his best ranking position, admitted it was difficult to negotiate a match against a fellow countryman.
Now he faces a far tougher challenge against Monfils and the 22-year-old said: "Just from knowing him throughout the years, he's obviously a very good athlete, moves well, makes a lot of balls. He has very, very easy power when he wants to hit it. Sometimes I think he likes to put more balls in play, maybe use his movement to win points.”
Andy Murray has a 4-2 head-to-head winning record against Monfils and Edmund may ask his friend for advice as he prepares for a first meeting. “I have asked Andy some stuff before about opponents, but not every time," he said.
“I just try and play my game every time I step out on the court, and problem solve once I am out there. As the match goes along, especially today, you learn things. I find you can have game plans going into it, but the percentage or ratio of game plans working a whole match is very little. You have to problem solve while you're out there.
“It was nice I was able to play some good tennis at the end, get through it basically. I have had enough losses, so it's nice to actually win a match in a senior event now.”
Alex Ward is ranked a lowly No.869 in the world thanks to a run of injuries that have made his a stop-start career and will now head back to the smaller tournaments. That will also be the route taken by James Ward, who lost 6-4, 6-4, 6-3 to Marcos Baghdatis. Ward was out for eight months with a knee injury and is currently ranked No.1,085 but showed glimpses of his old self in a defeat that proved he can still compete. Brydan Klein fought hard in the first set against Yuichi Sugita, the world No.44 who has been steadily climbing up the rankings ladder and was good value for his 7-6 ,6-3, 6-0 win.
Katie Boulter put up a great fight before losing her first main draw match to America’s Christina McHale 3-6, 7-5, 6-3. Boulter, ranked World No.238, has operated on the ITF Circuit and showed great promise, particularly in the first set, to suggest she can significantly improve her ranking. With her coach, Jeremy Bates, the former Wimbledon mixed doubles champion, clapping from the sidelines, Boulter was able to reflect on the best set of tennis of her life which put her in early control before the more experienced 25-year-old American, ranked Word No.60, took control of the contest and finished the stronger player.