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  • Wimbledon, Day One

Baltacha & Edmund lead Brit exodus

ESPN staff
June 24, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
Elena Baltacha was the first Brit on court, and the first to be beaten © PA Photos
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Six of the seven British hopefuls in action at Wimbledon on Monday went out, as some of the emerging names of the domestic game - and some more established players - failed to prosper on the game's biggest stage.

Elena Baltacha, Kyle Edmund, Samantha Murray, James Ward, Anne Keothavong and Johanna Konta all slipped out of the event in the first round at the All England Club, failing to cause their opponents too many problems in the process.

Andy Murray is the only Brit into the second round, with Heather Watson and Laura Robson bidding to join him on Tuesday.

Elena Baltacha was the first Brit to make her bow in this year's tournament at the All England Club, but her campaign was over before any of her compatriots had even played their first service game.

The British No. 3 was broken in the opening game against Flavia Pennetta at Wimbledon and, despite a few half-chances, never really recovered from there, eventually falling 6-4 6-1 in an hour and 14 minutes.

After her initial setback, Baltacha had a chance to regain parity at 3-2 but instead soon found herself 5-2 down after another break. But the Ipswich resident suddenly started swinging for the lines and gained immediate rewards, finally breaking Pennetta to force her to serve for the set. That the Italian did, although only after Baltacha had squandered a glorious chance to capitalise on an underhit serve at 30-30.

Perhaps still ruminating on that failure, Baltacha was again broken to start the second set - creating needless difficulties for herself. The Court 3 crowd attempted to will her back into contention but her spirit appeared to be broken, as she fell 4-0 behind before belatedly getting on the board.

The final few games were competitive but by then it was most certainly a case of too little, too late - as Baltacha went out of the event within its first official hour.

Kyle Edmund followed Baltacha onto Court 3 - but he too found himself overwhelmed by established opposition, as 24th seed Jerzy Janowicz gave him a painful induction into grand slam life.

Edmund, who deserves credit for never appearing to give up throughout the contest, found it difficult to live with the Pole's booming groundstrokes, struggling valiantly on the way to a 6-2 6-2 6-4 defeat.

The ladies that followed Edmund had similar struggles. Samantha Murray came into her meeting with Camila Giorgi with few expectations, but did cause her opponent her share of problems on the way to an eventual 6-3 6-4 defeat.

Johanna Konta, meanwhile, was on court at around the same time but found life even tougher against the formidable Jelena Jankovic - the former world No. 1 avoiding what was a potential banana skin as she picked up a 6-2 7-5 win.

Ward then lost to Taiwan's Yen-Hsun Lu - although he did at least win a set. That was more than could be said for Anne Keothavong, who went out to Garbine Muguruza 6-4 6-0.

Kyle Edmund was unable to upset Jerzy Janowicz on Court 3 © PA Photos
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