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Live Blog : Monday 18 June 2012

by Alexandra Willis
That's all folks

19:26I'm going to gather my coat-tails and flee. But I hope you've enjoyed the somewhat scatty coverage of the opening day of qualifying. I'll be very happy to leave you in the capable hands of the one and only Caroline Cheese tomorrow.

So to recap - it was a great day for Brian Baker, a middling day for the Brits, and a lovely day for photos.

If you want to keep following the last few matches, please check out the live scores.

We'll be back tomorrow at 11am.

19:22Re-started the tv. Progress.

Uh oh. Kyle Edmund has dropped the second set on a tie-break. This could go quickly now. But what an experience for the youngster. Luke Bambridge has bid farewell though. And Arnaud Clement is serving to stay in the second set.

There's plenty of doubles going on, too. Burton and Morgan fought back to win the second set 6-1, and are now serving to stay in the match, 5-6. They're no strangers to long matches, those two. Finalists in the boys' doubles in 2010, if you remember. To Broady and Farquharson.

19:07It's starting to thin out a little as we begin to get to the end of the opening day's play. And what a day it's been.

Still on court, Teixeira leads Mertl 5-3, Naso and Sugita are locked at 3-3 in the third, Edmund and Gimeno-Traver are 5-5 in the second, Mertsn and Gabashvili are on serve 4-3 in the second, and Clement is up a set and on serve in the second.

And my tv just died. Helpful.

18:48Two furious three-setters taking place on courts 2 and 3, Naso and Sugita, and Yang and Alves both neck and neck. Or back to back.

Edmund is on serve against Gimeno-Traver in his second set, Bambridge is unfortunately on the way out, a set down 1-6, and 0-3, while veteran Frenchman Arnaud Clement has snuck the first set 7-6 on a tie-break against Kenny de Schepper.

Other news: Burton and Morgan are a set down against Hsieh and Lee, and Monsieur Felder is about to inflict a double bagel on Crivoi, it seems. All systems are go.

18:33Sergei Bubka is another one across the finish line, a winner in three over Ginepri. Poor Robby. His glory days seem rather a long time ago. The colourfully-named Teixeira is due on court against Mertl (which makes me think of Moaning Myrtle, deary me), Yang and Alves are battling away in their third set, and Felder has dropped a bagel on Crivoi.

But raise a glass to Kyle Edmund, who has won the first set 6-3 over Gimeno-Traver. This could be big. Not such happy times for Bambridge though - he trails Bautista-Aguilar 1-5.

18:18After winning the first set to love, Mr Sugita has now got himself into a tie-break against Naso, which is rather a change in momentum. Edmund as been pushed back to 2-4, Bubka is a break up on Ginepri, 4-3, and M.Felder (note, not Federer, as I first read it), is 5-0 up on Criovi.

Long day? Yes.

18:07Gosh. Edmund is 3-1 up on Gimeno-Traver. So much for me saying it would be tough. No such luck though for Broady, who has gone out, and been replaced by another British hopeful, Luke Bambridge. He's warming up against Bautista-Agu something.

Burton and Morgan are on serve, 3-4. And Yang and Alves are into a decider after splitting tie-breaks. All going swimmingly, I think you'd agree.

Well that was eventful

17:45The practice courts here at Wimbledon are certainly humming pleasantly. We said hello to Novak Djokovic, had a look at Victoria Azarenka, and walked past Milos Raonic. Ernests Gulbis and Dmitry Tursunov were also hitting, while Max Mirnyi, who won the Queen's doubles title yesterday, was seen pushing a pram. As you do.

Back to qualifying, and Martin Fischer has joined the winners, as well as Simone Greul, Giannessi, Dustov, Brugues-Davi, Vagnozzi, Bolelli, Kuznetsov, Minar, Baker (Brian), Russell, and Grigelis.

Ginepri and Bubka have split sets, but Broady dropped the first on a tie-break, is on serve in the second. Mouthwatering, that one.

There's another Brit in action, Kyle Edmund, a very well-proportioned young man, but he's facing a tough one against Gimeno-Traver.

Back shortly

17:20Going to catch a glimpse of Djokovic and Azarenka on the practice courts. Don't go away.

In the meantime, follow the live scores.

17:11We've got some more photos from Roehampton for you to have a browse of.

It seems a bit like the light is dimming a little, but perhaps that's just my chipper level. Perhaps that coffee hasn't kicked in yet. Anyhoo. While Petra Kvitova debuts some lovely new shoes for 'The Wimbledon' (take a look here, gold star for her, Liam Broady has been pushed back into a tie-break with Fabbiano, but Brian Baker is a set up on Albot. Bolelli is a set up on Burquier, Dustov and Ouanna are in a third, still, and former junior Yuki Bhambri, THE next big thing in India, is 3-3 v the experienced Marc Gicquel.

16:48Two more three-setters in progress between Ouanna and Dustov, and Vagnozzi and Skugor - where do all these young men come from? - but a very solid start for Liam Broady, who leads Fabbiano 4-1. What an experience that would be for the Brit if he can make it through one or two, or even three matches here.

Michael Russell meanwhile, nicknamed 'Mussel' on account of his fondness for very tight wife beaters that show off his biceps, is storming away, 5-1 up over Lammer. Grigelis is 4-2 up on Veic, Ivo Minar leads Rodrigues by a set, and Brian Baker has also had a blistering barnacles start, 4-1 up on Albot.

Next to court meanwhile is Sergei Bubka, son of the pole vaulter, who faces former Wimbledon semi-finalist Robby Ginepri. Bubka is the current beau of Victoria Azarenka, who is practising at Aorangi Park at Wimbledon right this minute. When worlds don't quite collide...

16:37Thank you to the kind soul who brought me a cup of coffee. Eternal gratitude.

Anyway...Baker and Broady are underway, but it's woop de doo for another Baker, Jamie Baker, who has beaten Donald Young 6-1, 6-4 in Eastbourne. What a performance from the Brit. I'm dancing in my seat.

Gil meanwhile has redeemed the second set but is down a break in the third, but whoa whoa for Ciric and Trunelliti, who are at 9-10 in their final set. Ridiculous.

Interesting stat...

16:27From the man in the know, @GBtennis

@GBtennis: "Chris [Eaton] picked up just 6 ranking points in his first 14 tournaments this year, now he has picked up another 8 in one match."

Shows what a good run can do for you. But it's not just about the big match occasions. Sadly.

16:20Marsel Ilhan is through, the exuberant Turk who is followed by an army of flag-carrying fans, as is Monsieur Authom, who saw off South African Rik De Voest, Guillaume Rufin is also a winner, and Aussie James Duckworth.

They've also just been joined by Chris Eaton, hurrah huzzah, who is into the second round. He'll play top seed Jurgen Zopp next. Eaton's departure heralds the arrival of youngster Liam Broady, who reached the final of the boys' singles here last year, and is a very exciting prospect. He's a lefty, for your information.

I'm not the only one that noticed..

16:17 @yesh222TSHQ: "Ridiculously, there are currently 3 @Wimbledon qualifying matches that are past 6-6 in the third."

These dudes like to make life hard for themselves.

Shades of Isner Mahut?

16:11You might not know that there is no final set tie-break in Wimbledon qualifying. So spare a thought for Menendez-Maceiras and Jan Hernych, who are currently at 8-8 in the final set of their match. Going long, perhaps?

Also reaching impressive numbers are Ciric (not Cilic, mind) and Trungelliti, the Argentine leading 7-6 in their third set. Kudla and De Munoz-de la Nava (another mouthful) are in a third too, as are Bobby Reynolds and Chvojka (help!) who are also locked at 7-7.

Any more? Well, Chris Eaton will serve for his place in the second round - Mitchell is serving to stay in it, 2-5. British flag please. And Simone Bolelli, he of the beautiful backhand, has just started against Burquier, who I have never heard of.

Delighted to report...

15:59...that we still haven't had a spot of rain. Which means everyone is feeling pretty chipper about life in general, happily. Top seed Jurgen Zopp especially, who went through 6-4, 6-4.

Do you remember Laurynas Grigelis? The youngster from Lithuania who dealt Britain's Dan Evans an agonising five-set, fifth rubber defeat in Vilnius, Lithuania, a few years ago? It was the defeat that sent Team GB down into a relegation play-off in Europe/Africa Zone Group II, and cost John Lloyd his job. Anyway, Grigelis is warming up against Antonio Veic for his 1R qualifying match.

Speaking of Brits, Chris Eaton is still plugging away, on serve 2-1 in the third. But there might be a bit of a shock for Frederico Gil or Portugal, who has dropped the first set against Dasnieres deVeigy (longest name of the day).

Still thirsting after my cuppa. Any tea-bringing angels around?

15:43One of the big names in action today is Brian Baker, the American who went all the way through qualifying at Roland Garros, and several rounds further. Everyone's fascinated to see how he gets on on the grass. He's in action against Albot, following the conclusion of Munoz against Kudla, which is into a third set.

Ilhan and Udomchoke are also into a decider, as are Authom and De Voest (who wears sunglasses). Same goes for Ciric and Trugelliti, and, sorry to say, Chris Eaton, who is still battling away against Mitchell.

Mathematical stat of the day meanwhile is that if Roger Federer wins Wimbledon, and Novak Djokovic fails to reach the final, Federer could be No.1 again. Likely? Or unlikely?

15:31Dustin Brown is always full of surprises. The German, who is famed for his distinctive dreadlocks, decided to push the all-white rule to the limits by stepping on court sporting luminous green and orange shoelaces. He had a unique take on the conditions: “The first day we came here on the Saturday we practised and it was like a tornado so compared to that it was definitely OK. A little windy but OK,” he smiled.

Now that's character. He gets a gold star for that.

We have some photos!

15:21We're delighted to show you some picture highlights from the play so far at Roehampton...

15:00The sun really is shining brightly now, which is a welcome change from the torrential drizzles of last week. Not to jinx it.

I am praying for someone to deliver me a cup of tea. But it's not working. In the meantime, the following are a set up - Authom on de Voest, Reynolds on Chvojka, Munoz on Kudla, Kuznetsov on Berankis, Eaton on Mitchell (woop), and Rufin on Weintraub, Duckworth on Bedene.

My spies tell me that Eaton is getting a lot of support from fans and fellow Brits out there so keep it up!

14:50Apologies for the silence. I got lost in the bowels of a portacabin. Not recommended.

In the meantime, our friend Mr Merw has won in straight sets, Ivan Navarro has knocked out Daniel Brands, Yani has beaten Oswald, Bemelmans ( who once played mixed doubles with Justine Henin), has beaten Donskoy, Cervantes has seen off Morgan (tough luck George), David Rice fought hard but has gone down to Zhang, and Heliovaara has finally come good against Silva.

All is not lost though in Brit-watch terms. Chris Eaton, who famously qualified and made it to the second round at Wimbledon a few years ago, is battling away against Ben Mitchell in a tie-break. And Jan Hernych, something of a veteran these days, is into a third set against someone untypable.

Certainly cranking through these matches, I'm sure you'll agree!

14:21In case you didn't know, Andrew McDougall is almost as hot a name in press terms as David Nalbandian. But while Nalby is (sensibly) nowhere to be seen, McDougall is back at work at Wimbledon qualifying. Dedication for you.

Michael Berrer has survived his three-set epic against Torebko, 6-1 in the third, and former junior No.1 Jerzy Janowicz is also through after his opponent Gojowczyk (how do you pronounce that?!) retired. Dzumhur is also a winner over Lojda, I'm sure you know who both of those are, and that's it for results for the meantime.

For matches, Marsel Ilhan is taking on Danai Udomchoke in the next big match of the day on Court 1, while Michael Yani, another familiar name, and Ruben Bemelmans, another, are well under way.

And finally, raise your Union Jack for Chris Eaton, 3-1 against Ben Mitchell.

14:05There is a celebrity in the midst at Roehampton. Andy Murray has been taking a little look at who's who.

More from man in the know, Stu Fraser: @stu_fraser: "Andy Murray milling about down here at Roehampton watching some of the action. Looking & sounding relaxed as ever."

14:00Bye bye Bloomers. Sadly, Richard Bloomfield has gone down in straight sets to Moriya, 4-6, 4-6, and George Morgan is having a tricky time against Cervantes, down 0-6, 2-3, but still on serve in the second set.

In better British news, David Rice has fought back to take the second set 6-4 against Zhang, and is a break up in the third.

13:37Florent Serra has joined the other gents through to the second round of qualifying. As has Mr Farah (no relation to Mo, I'm assuming. And Mannarino has just beaten Levine in a third set tie-break.

Berrer and Torebko are into a third set, as are Heliovaara and Silva. Richard Bloomfield looks like he might be about to go home. And, my new favourite name of the day, belongs to Argentine Marco Trungelliti. Really rolls off the tongue.

So what do you think so far? Please tweet me and let me know.

13:22More results for you.

Ryan Sweeting made it through against Kuznetsova, 6-3 in the third, Salamanca saw off Alund (I seem to have missed that one completely), Chiudinelli beat Fitzpatrick.

In action, we've got the lovely-named Izak van der Merw of South Africa, who is a set up over Gensse, Ivan Navarro leads second seed Daniel Brands 5-1 (shock alert), Mannarino and Levine are into a third, David Rice is down a set, as is Blommers, and a break too, oh dear, and Heliovaara (mouthful) is down a set but up a break 3-1 on Silva.

13:10In other news. Huge congratulations to Melanie Oudin, who has backed up her Wimbledon wild card by winning the AEGON Classic title in Birmingham, beating Jelena Jankovic in the process. The girl's got her belief back, it seems.

And qualifying continues at a pace so furious that I just can't keep up- have a look at the Matches in Progress page under Scores...

12:57Viola has also sealed the win, 6-2 over Kudryavtsev in the third. Definite battles going on for Americans Levine and Sweeting, both trying to eek out their wins in deciding sets.

Florent Serra has started extremely strongly, 5-0 up in the first set against Velotti, Michael Berrer is struggling a little against Torebko, up 6-5 on serve, and Marco Chiudinelli of Switzerland is one game from a win over Andrew Fitzpatrick.

Brit-watchers - Bloomers is 3-3 in the first set agaisnt Moriya, ticking along on serve, as is David Rice, who has a monster serve of his own. Any questions?

12:50Some more winners for you. Dustin Brown is through in two (Schoorel retired), Tim Smyczek in two, Jouan in three...

Sweeting is fighting back meanwhile, and is into a decider, as are Jesse Levine and Adrian Mannarino. Mannarino was a surprise quarter-finalist at Queen's last year, if you remember.
And we have another Brit in action, David Rice, who won his wild card into qualifying in the play-offs at Aorangi last week.

I'll be back

12:35Need a cup of tea. And sadly I have no one's capable hands to leave you in, because the one and only Caroline Cheese got stuck in Birmingham. Honestly.

12:33Stephane Robert joins the winners in round two with a 6-4, 6-3 win over Ed Corrie. Tough luck Ed. Bloomers has won the first game of his match, and Florent Serra is finally warming up against Velotti in what is the last match of the day to get going. Meanwhile Jouan looks like he's going to upset Zverev. And Viola and Kudryavtsev are into a third. All gung ho.

Did you know?

12:27That Aussie Ben Mitchell, playing in qualifying, is the younger brother of Home and Away star Luke Mitchell? Now you do. And bless Luke, he's even tweeted his brother good luck... @LukeMitchell_ "My bro Ben Mitchell is playing in the Men's Qualifying at Wimbledon today! Anyone going and want to support him? He's 2nd match on Court 16 :)"

12:26Now then. Dustin Brown is quite a character. The formerly Jamaican turned German hit the headlines with tales of driving around Germany in his VW van, sleeping in it, while playing in tournaments. He may have the best hair in tennis, but has struggled a bit to achieve regular results on the tour. Perhaps it's all coming good now - he's taken the first set 6-3 over the big-serving Schoorel.

We have a winner!

12:21The first two men are through to the second round of qualifying - Rajeev Ram, who saw off Maximo Gonzalez 6-2, 6-3, and Peter Polansky, who beat Paulo Galdon 6-4, 6-1. Hurrah. Ed Corrie is on serve in the second set against Robert, hanging on in there, and he is shortly to be joined on the next court by another Brit, Richard Bloomfield, fondly known as 'Bloomers.' Remember him?

12:08For those still asking, damp courts have meant a few matches are kicking off a little late, don't worry, no one's been carted off in an ambulance or anything. Touch wood.

We're into a third set between Jouan and Zverev, whil Kuznetsov is already a set and break up on Sweeting. Polansky is one game from making the second round, as is Ram, despite heavy strapping all over his long legs.
And Wayne Odesnik has fought back to take the second set from Krajinovic, so they're into a decider too!

12:04Things have gotten a little tough for Ed Corrie. He's struggling a bit in rather blustery flustery conditions, and has surrendered the first set 4-6 to Robert. He's hanging in though.

And Ram is absolutely flying along against Gonzalez, who apparently is wrongly photographed on the website scores. Apologies to Santiago Gonzalez, who is pictured there instead. These things happen.

11:56A little note from former great, Paul McNamee, who with Peter MacNamara, was just like the Woodies. Or the Bryans. @PaulFMcNamee "@Wimbledon qualifying has officially begun. The most nerve wracking week of the year for hopefuls. Good luck to everyone."

11:49What else can I tell you? It seems like every man and his dog is on the hunt for David Nalbandian. Well I can tell you that he's not hiding at Roehampton. Or Wimbledon.
Viola is fighting back against Kudryavtsev, having dropped the first set, and is a break up, Peter Polansky has won the first set 6-4 over Galdon, Rajeev Ram has blistered through his first set 6-2 on Gonzalez, and we've also got lots more courts open - my personal favourite - Dustin Brown against Thomas Schoorel. That'll have some firecrackers on it, for sure.

11:38We have our first set of The Championships 2012. Krajinovic has taken the first set 6-3 over Odesnik. And Alex Kudryavtsev is a game away from the first set over Viola, 5-3, as is Jouan over Zverev, 5-4. Interesting.

Ed Corrie meanwhile is still on serve, 3-4, and Ryan Sweeting and Alex Kuznetsova are locked in a big-serving battle, 3-3. Phew.

11:36Just realised I typed 'who's excited' twice. That's what happens when you start live-blogging. It all gets a bit overwhelming. Apologies.

11:31What else can I tell you? Krajinovic has broken back and is back on serve 4-3 against Odesnik, everyone else is ticking along quite nicely, and Ed Corrie is hanging in on serve 1-2 against Robert. Play on some courts has been put back to 12 noon, but otherwise it's hey ho and on we go. If you want to follow this scintillating action by staring at a screen, check out the Matches in progress page under Scores.

11:25Meanwhile at Wimbledon...it's fairly busy on the practice courts. We've got Feliciano Lopez and Fernando Verdasco having an all-Spanish hit-up, Jamie Murray also in attendance, and the likes of Lleyton Hewitt, Maria Sharapova, Novak Djokovic and Victoria Azarenka all due a little later on. Who's excited?

11:18Odesnik is up a break 2-1 on Krajinovic already, which is rapid work, Smyczek and Dutra Silva are on serve, Andrey Kuznetsov and Ryan Sweeting have entered the fray, as have Rajeev Ram and Maximo Gonzalez.
The rest of the matches are trickling into action because of some damp courts, a minor miracle really when you recall the Noah-esque floods predicted last week.

11:14We've also got a British player on court. Edward Corrie, who has been playing college tennis in the States, has just begun against Stephane Robert of France.

And, another match in action, Peter Polansky from Canada is a game up on Pablo Galdon of Argentina.

Warm-ups under way

11:08The first of the day's players are warming up, some of them experienced on grass, others, not so much. First on Court 1 is the wonderfully named Filip Krajinovic of Serbia against 20th seed American Wayne Odesnik (who you may recall has been in the headlines a little bit over the past year or so). We've also got another American, Tim Smyczek (try typing that in a hurry) against Brazilian sixth seed Rogerio Dutra Silva, and, hello world, Romain Jouan of France has won the first game of the day against Russian Mischa Zverev.

Hello sunshine

10:57Qualifying is traditionally a sea of players, coaches, and the odd sprinkling of spectators, making the event much more about the matches than who is watching them. It's a tough, tough world out there on the Roehampton grass courts, players tasked with winning three matches on the trot just to make it into the main draw. The good news though is that the sun is shining, and we're looking forward to an action-packed today of grass court action.

Welcome to The Championships 2012

10:49Hello and welcome to the first matches of The Championships 2012, which commence with the Qualifying event at Roehampton. Qualifying is set to start very shortly, with Gentlemen's Singles Qualifying and Gentlemen's Doubles Qualifying on the agenda for today. We'll be following the action throughout the day, so please do check back and keep us company. You can tweets us @Wimbledon, email website@aeltc.com, or post a comment on facebook.com/Wimbledon Who's excited?!


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