Kyle Edmund is learning all the time but he could face his biggest lesson yet as he makes his Centre Court debut at Wimbledon today.
It’s testament to the British No 2’s growing stature in the game that his second round clash with 15th seed Gael Monfils will open proceedings on the world’s most famous show court, shunting a certain Novak Djokovic off the schedule.
But Edmund, ranked 50th in the world, is doing a good job of managing expectations and keeping a lid on his obvious excitement.
“First time on Centre Court is pretty cool and I was certainly surprised when I saw my name there on the order of play,” he said.
“It should be a really good experience. It’s the home of tennis, it’s the best court in the world and as a British player it’s the pinnacle – other than winning Wimbledon.
“As a kid, when you start playing, you always imagine you are on Centre Court in a big match. It’s an honour and privilege, I know they don’t give it to anyone, and I’m really looking forward to it and I’m going to soak up the experience.
“But I don’t want to be too overawed by the occasion, it’s just another tennis match that I need to win.”
Four British players advanced to Wimbledon’s third round yesterday, Andy Murray and Jo Konta joined by Aljaz Bedene and Heather Watson.
It’s the best home performance at the All England Club in 20 years and Edmund could improve that record further should he get the better of Monfils.
Most top singles players enjoy the day on, day off routine of Wimbledon but Edmund meanwhile insists he has no regrets about a tough three hour battle in the men’s doubles on Wednesday.
It’s an honour and privilege, I know they don’t give it to anyone, and I’m really looking forward to it and I’m going to soak up the experience.
He was on the wrong side of two tie-breaks as he lost in the first round with partner Joao Sousa, beaten by Indian specialists Purav Raja and Divij Sharan 7-6, 3-6, 6-4, 7-6.
“Every game gives me an opportunity to learn, I’m just disappointed we didn’t come through a very tight match,” he added.
“Playing doubles is good practice for me, singles is the priority but this gives me the chance to work on my game and three hours on court is as good as three hours on the practice court.”
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