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Can Andy Murray bring his British bulldog spirit to Wimbledon?

by Josh Powell | June 26, 2012
Andy Murray

NO WORRY FOR MURRAY: Andy’s 11/1 for Wimbledon glory

By Lee Dover

The Pimms has been poured, the strawberries and cream have been munched and some of the greatest names in tennis have shown how it is done on one of the grandest stages in the sport.

Yes, Wimbledon 2012 has roared into action and already we have witnessed Novak Djokovic start his defence of the men’s singles championship with a boom, Maria Sharapova catch the eye on court – quite possibly for more reasons than just her skills with a racket – and Roger Federer getting accustomed to one of his most-loved venues.

So we come to day two, and with it the weight of Britain’s expectations are perched on the hefty shoulders of a certain Andy Murray.

The Scot has already shown that he knows how to handle himself around the tennis court – getting to British number one is not as easy as some fans may think – but is still looking to end his Grand Slam duck.

His first challenge is a formidable one though, in the shape of Nikolay Davydenko, a Russian heavyweight who has one of the biggest serves in the game.

However, Murray has tried to ease the threat from the East by stating: “I’ve had a good record against [Russians] in the past but it can be quite mentally challenging playing against them because you can’t really lose focus on your own serve, even if it’s just for a few points.”

Paddy Power has a price of 1/25 that Murray will power through the first round of Wimbledon 2012, while odds of 11/1 are on offer for the Scot to lift the crown come July 8th.

It is not just all British spirit which will be shining in SW19 today though, with Petra Kvitova returning to the ground where she shocked the world just 12 months ago.

PETRA DIDN’T SEE THAT COMING: Kvitova wins Wimbledon 2011. Getty Images

There would not have been many people who would have given the Czech starlet a shot of powering through Sharapova in last year’s women’s final, but alas she proved that every underdog has its day.

Will lightning strike twice for Kvitova then? She’s 1/50 with Paddy Power to ease past Akgul Amanmuradova and begin another remarkable quest at SW19.

Of course, there are always surprises at Wimbledon and the odds of 10/1 for the Uzbekistan to put her catchy name in the annals of the tournament may be worth putting a few pennies on.

The quality at Wimbledon continues all through the day, with another championship contender in the form of newly-crowned seven-time French Open victor Rafael Nadal heading out on court to face Thomaz Bellucci.

Fellow Spanish ace David Ferrer is also in action, as is American tennis icon Andy Roddick, French hopeful Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and four-time Wimbledon women’s champion Serena Williams.

She will be looking to avenge yesterday’s first round exit by her sister Venus, who has been struggling with illness for much of the last 12 months, but the Czech Republic’s world number 62 Barbora Strycova will prove a stern test.

One thing is for sure then – it will be difficult to turn away from the action on court all throughout the day.

This year all of the matches at Wimbledon will be streamed live on PPtv for Ireland and UK customers

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