Wimbledon set to get under way without Andy Murray
Federer will begin his defence of the title on Centre Court on Monday.
Defending champion Roger Federer will begin his bid for a record-breaking ninth title at Wimbledon, as this year’s tournament gets under way without former winner Andy Murray.
Two-time champion Murray announced his withdrawal from the championships, saying he needs to continue his rehab and recovery following hip surgery.
It is the fourth straight grand slam Murray has withdrawn from and tennis fans queuing for tickets on Sunday near the famous south-west London grounds said they were disappointed the Scot would not feature in this year’s matches.
Hey everyone... It is with a heavy heart that I’m announcing that I’ll be withdrawing from Wimbledon this year....Posted by Andy Murray on Sunday, July 1, 2018
Murray said he took the decision “with regret” and thanked people for their messages of support.
Federer will begin his defence of the title by playing Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic on Centre Court.
Leading the charge for the British women is Johanna Konta, who begins her campaign against Natalia Vikhlyantseva, the world number 106 from Russia, on Tuesday.
The Met Office forecast for the All England Club predicts dry, sunny weather and temperatures in the mid-20Cs for much of this week.
Wimbledon Park, where fans began camping at the weekend, reached 30.4C on Sunday afternoon.
Forecaster Simon Partridge said any stoppage of play due to the weather is unlikely, with only a low risk of a shower first thing in the morning before play starts on Monday.
Will the dry and warm weather continue into the new week? Or will we see more thunderstorms? Find out here... ☀️☀️☀️ pic.twitter.com/p18RQeze6W— Met Office (@metoffice) July 1, 2018
Following a suggestion by Rafael Nadal that the grass at the All England Club is longer this year, Wimbledon’s head groundsman Neil Stubley said it is “exactly the same”.
Last year, the state of the courts during a hot first week of play was criticised by a number of players, with France’s Kristina Mladenovic branding them dangerous.
Mr Stubley said he is confident the courts can handle the heat.
“We’re very happy with where we are,” he said.