Wimbledon 2023: Cam Norrie fights into second round with win over Tomas Machac
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2022 semi-finalist Cam Norrie has booked his place in the second round with a hard-fought 6-3, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 win over 22-year-old Czech star, Tomas Machac.
The British No.1 is through to the second round at Wimbledon for the fourth consecutive year. His first round victory marks his 20th tour-level win on grass throughout his career.
“I honestly came out on court today with a smile on my face – coming out to this atmosphere and being back at Wimbledon,” Norrie said.
“The first set I was just enjoying it and was playing a good level, but he was really aggressive in the second and didn’t give me much. He made it difficult for me but it was a great first match."
Norrie was one of just one of six completed matches by the time he’d finished – due to rain on the outside courts – and will either play last week’s Mallorca Open champion Christopher Eubanks or Thiago Monteiro in the second round.
“In the last two years, that would have been me waiting around in the rain,” he said. “It was nice to get a nice run last year and earn the right to play on this court this year. I got to play on it before which was an advantage and it was nice to get it done, get the first one out the way and start my campaign here.”
The match proved a real tussle between two high quality players, with momentum swinging between them throughout. Out in front of the home crowd, it was Norrie who made the brighter start breaking twice at the backend of the set, whilst dropping just seven points on his own serve.
However, Machac sprung to life in the second set. While he may not be the tallest, or have the biggest serve, the Czech star used the serve and volley to great effect, putting the British No.1 under more and more pressure. Norrie on the other hand started to struggle a bit more on his and Machac managed to break twice to level the scores at one set apiece.
It was advantage Norrie in the third – who wrapped up the set in just 25 minutes – as Machac appeared to be struggling with some discomfort.
Into the fourth and Norrie had to claw his way back from an early break deficit, but from there it always looked like an uphill battle for the qualifier. Machac mustered up everything he could to withstand the pressure from Norrie – finding key serves at the right time to fend off break opportunities for the Brit 2-2 and 3-3, but eventually his luck ran out.
Norrie’s persistence proved the difference in the end. A fortunate lobbed return from Brit set up two break points, before Norrie forced a key error from the Czech to seal what would be, the decisive break.