Liam Broady exit completes horror day for British men at Wimbledon
Liam Broady’s impressive Wimbledon journey is over after he was beaten in the third round by Denis Shapovalov.
The British number five enjoyed a dream Centre Court victory over fourth seed Casper Ruud on Thursday but he was unable to produce another shock, going down 4-6, 6-2, 7-5, 7-5.
The defeat ended British interest in the men’s singles as Broady followed Andy Murray and Cameron Norrie out on a chastening afternoon for the male home players.
He will perhaps have some regrets as he served to go two sets to one up against Shapovalov, but will leave the tournament feeling proud of his efforts as the British man who got the furthest.
He matched his best performance at a grand slam and the GBP 131,000 payday and rankings boost will make a tangible difference to his career, starting with the prospect of him making the US Open main draw next month.
There were questions over how he would pull up after Thursday’s five-setter, and with Shapovalov also playing on Thursday both men made an inauspicious start as there were four breaks of serve by the time it got to 3-3.
Broady began to find his rhythm against the below-par Canadian and pounced at 4-5, breaking for the third time to take the first set.
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It was a typically erratic performance from the 26th seed, one moment ripping an unplayable one-handed backhand, the next missing an open-court volley but he managed get two breaks in the second set to level things up.
Helped by some more wayward Shapovalov hitting the Briton manoeuvred himself into a commanding position in the third set and he served for it at 5-3.
But the Canadian regained his level and reeled off four successive games to take a set that looked to have gone.
To his credit, Broady stuck with it in the fourth set, but Shapovalov struck at 5-5 and then served it out to end British hopes for another year, with all three men going out within an hour and a half of each other.
“To be honest, it’s tough at this level because I think for me to compete with someone like Denis, I probably need to be at the tip-top of my game. Probably an hour into the match, your legs feel pretty heavy. So I was pretty glad that I won the first set because otherwise it might have been a straight-sets victory for him,” said Broady.
“But I understand how it works. This is Wimbledon. The players work around the schedule. I only have myself to blame.”
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