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Wimbledon: Broady back in love with the sport despite his exit

By Mark Bryans

Published 02/07/2015

Enthusiastic outlook: Liam Broady has rediscovered his passion for tennis despite a second-round exit to David Goffin
Enthusiastic outlook: Liam Broady has rediscovered his passion for tennis despite a second-round exit to David Goffin

Liam Broady has seized new direction from his Wimbledon breakthrough for the "slog" of living his career out of a suitcase, but still sees no prospect of reconciliation with his father.

Stockport-born Broady bowed to David Goffin's clear supremacy in a 7-6 (7-3) 6-1 6-1 second-round defeat to the Belgian 16th seed yesterday.

The 21-year-old will use the £47,000 prize money from his maiden Wimbledon victory to bankroll a men's tour existence lived constantly on the move.

The World No 182 has lapped up the SW19 spotlight, with Twitter users setting up an homage profile to his fulsome beard, and coyly retaining an air of mystery around his torso tattoos of ancient Greek hero Achilles and a lion.

Broady suggested father Simon made a wise choice not to watch him in action against Goffin, the pair estranged ever since he fell back under Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) tutelage three years ago.

"I don't think my dad was there, no," said Broady, whose father cannot forgive the LTA for punishing daughter Naomi when controversial pictures surfaced online eight years ago.

"He's my dad; he'll probably keep track of the scores and stuff I'm sure, because I am his son.

"But I think it's best for me and for him that he stays away from the court. I've got direction again after beating Matosevic.

"The tour is a bit of a slog and a grind as everyone knows. That's the fantastic thing about Slams, they're the light at the end of the tunnel four times a year.

"To know that I can compete with these best guys and still have so much to improve on and be reasonably tight with Goffin, it's immensely uplifting."

Broady was unable to claim a wildcard mixed doubles entry with sister Naomi, who fell out of the main women's draw at the first hurdle.

The latest update in British tennis' soap opera family has added real colour to the early stages of this year's Wimbledon battle, but now that spotlight will fade.

Broady has revelled in the attention, even though the strong home support did little to deny Goffin.

"He was just so solid for the whole match; he knew when to apply pressure and when to soak it up," said Broady.

"I tried to fight until the end. Sometimes it's tough because against these guys, if your legs are slightly tired or you are slightly off on the day, they take advantage of it. And that's what happened.

"I've absolutely loved it (the limelight). It's been fantastic.

"I felt at home again on court against David. He's 15th in the world and that first set, I felt fantastic. Off the ground it was gruelling. I have to get used to that because the very best guys play with incredible intensity.

"I play well on the big stage, and again today before the match got away from me, I played well."

Broady said not even a relentless travel schedule, sleeping on friends' sofas to save funds, can diminish his new-found enthusiasm.

"I think at the NTC (National Tennis Centre) maybe I've stayed in one place for two or three weeks at a time," said Broady.

"When I was back in Manchester over Christmas I started to get itchy feet to be honest.

"It used to get to me when I was younger but I've grown to love it and I feel like I need to get back out there and get to work again."

Belfast Telegraph

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