Andy Murray to face Nikoloz Basilashvili in first round
In what he has admitted could be his last Wimbledon, Andy Murray has drawn a first-round tie against Nikoloz Basilashvili, the Georgian who has spent much of the last year embroiled in a legal case over allegations of domestic abuse.
Basilashvili – whose case remains unresolved – is the No24 seed, and a man Murray has never faced on the tour before. He is known for his powerful strokeplay and his emotionless expression.
The immediate reaction of Barry Cowan, the former British No3 offering radio commentary on the draw, was that “This is a good draw for Murray, because Basilashvili is a great ball-striker who isn’t so comfortable when you change the pace. And we know how good Murray is at doing that.”
Speaking to Sky Sports earlier in the week, Murray said that – while he has no immediate intention to retire – his ongoing injury issues could take the decision out of his hands.
“It’s not so much about worrying about it being my last [Wimbledon], it’s just something that I think about,” said Murray, who has been struggling with a groin problem which seems to be unrelated to the metal implant in his right hip.
“I’ve had so many injuries and so many setbacks you just don’t really know what’s round the corner. I want to approach each tournament and each match that I play like it’s my last one so that I can get the most out of it.”
Nikoloz Basilashvili is the No 24 seed
Credit: GETTY IMAGES
Meanwhile Britain’s best teenage prospect Jack Draper – who reached the quarter-finals of Queen’s last week – faces the unenviable task of playing world No1 and runaway favourite Novak Djokovic in the first round.
On the women’s side, Johanna Konta will play the Belarussian Aliaksandra Sasnovich – a woman she has beaten in both their previous meetings, although each of those matches was a tight three-setter.
And Fran Jones – the extraordinary British No4 who has earned her first appearance at Wimbledon despite being born without one finger on each hand – will take on 17-year-old American sensation Coco Gauff.
In the minutes before the draw, defending women’s champion Simona Halep announced that she will not be participating after failing to recover from a calf injury. Halep joins three other former major champions – Naomi Osaka, Rafael Nadal and Dominic Thiem – on the withdrawal list.
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When does Wimbledon start?
Wimbledon begins on Monday, June 28. As per tradition, the defending men’s champion (Djokovic) will open proceedings on Centre Court at 1pm.
Wimbledon men's seeds
Wimbledon women's seeds
Where to watch Wimbledon on TV
The BBC has exclusive coverage of the tournament. Sue Barker will lead the coverage with the likes of Tim Henman, Andrew Castle and John Lloyd from the opening day.
Viewers can watch the action on BBC One, BBC Two and BBC Red Button with up to 18 courts to choose from through Connected TVs, BBC iPlayer, the BBC Sport website and app.
BBC Two will also show Today at Wimbledon every evening, looking back at the day’s play.
What are the latest Wimbledon odds?
Men’s singles winner
- Novak Djokovic 5/6
- Daniil Medvedev 6/1
- Stefanos Tsitsipas 13/2
- Roger Federer 17/2
- Matteo Berrettini 11/1
Women’s singles winner
- Serena Williams 6/1
- Ashleigh Barty 7/1
- Aryna Sabalenka 11/1
- Petra Kvitova 11/1
- Garbine Muguruza 12/1
How much prize money is on offer at Wimbledon?
While the money on offer at Wimbledon usually increases each year, the financial implications of the coronavirus pandemic have led to a 5.2 per cent drop in the overall prize pot.
There will still be £35,016,000 up for grabs in total, however, with the winners of the men’s and women’s singles finals getting £1.7million each.
Prize money breakdown in full
- Winner: £1,700,000
- Runner-up: £900,000
- Semi-finalists: £465,000
- Quarter-finalists: £300,000
- Fourth round: £181,000
- Third round: £115,000
- Second round: £75,000
- First round: £48,000