Tennis: Wimbledon - Smith waits on doctor as British girls go out

BRITAIN'S INVOLVEMENT in the women's singles is dependent on the advice of a doctor after the elimination of Karen Cross and Louise Latimer yesterday. The hope is the diagnosis proves more accurate for Sam Smith than it did for Greg Rusedski.

Smith, the 26-year-old British No 1, is due to meet the former champion and eighth seed Conchita Martinez in the third round today although she finished on crutches after beating Argentina's Mariana Diaz Oliva on Wednesday night.

During the game she heard a loud crack and felt a shooting pain through her left foot. An X-ray revealed nothing although she was still limping in the competitors' room yesterday. "I don't know if I'll be fit," she said. "I'll have to see in the morning." At least there is some hope, but for Cross and Latimer their Wimbledon came to a halt yesterday even if the process was elongated by the on-off nature of the play. The more disappointed of the pair will be Cross, who had suggested she might fight back against Thailand's world No 42 Tamarine Tanasugarn.

Cross, who had match point against Iva Majoli in the third round last year, had a 4-2 lead in the second set, but the promising position was lost quickly when she took to the court for the third time, going down 6-2, 7-5.

It was not hard to see why Cross has found it hard to reach the elite 100. She has talent, but the 24-year-old from Exeter does not have height, an essential element in the modern women's game. At 5ft 4in she is dwarfed by the leviathans at the top who are at least three inches taller.

Not that Tanasugarn exactly towered over Croft, it was only when the tracksuits came off that you began to fear for the home prospects. The Thai girl had shoulders that could have propped a rugby scrum. It was not hard to see who would have the weight and power advantage.

The first point confirmed that as Tanasugarn's thumping drive down the line crashed into Cross's flimsy backhand. "I think I know what's going to happen here," someone said in the crowd, and when the score was 3- 0 within minutes you feared for her. "I don't know why, but I started cold," Cross said. "It was the opposite in my first-round match. There's no pattern."

At that stage the strongest element in her game was the withering stare she had given a lineswoman, but she had managed to break back to trail 3-2 when rain stopped her.

The same happened when she took to the court again. Cross had risked taking lunch and began sluggishly, Tanasugarn took the first set and then overcame her opponent's resurgence after another break.

"There was not much between us," Cross said. "The difference is that I can only play at that level in patches, she sustained it for the whole match. I have to build my level of consistency."

Latimer was not looking to build anything, just keep the damage to the bare minimum when she went 5-0 down to the world No 26, Sabine Appelmans, who halted one of Steffi Graf's comebacks earlier this year. She had begun brightly, going 40-15 up in the first game, but the rain came as blessed relief, not an irksome irritation.

"I wasn't nervous," the 20- year-old from Norwich said, "it was just that I hadn't met someone who hits the ball so clean and so deep. I felt quite good when I got on court, but when we came off my coach told me to take more risks. The way I was playing I wasn't going to get anywhere."

Latimer, who was in her first senior Wimbledon, managed to avoid a whitewash in the first set and then came back strongly at Appelmans after a second interruption, breaking the Belgian once and threatening her opponent's serve again before she succumbed 6-1, 6-4.

"She's 225 places above me so there wasn't any pressure," Latimer said. "Now I know what it takes to get near the top. It's been a good learning experience for me."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Technical Manager / Technical Executive

£25000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity exists ...

Recruitment Genius: IT Engineer

£21000 - £23600 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity to join...

Recruitment Genius: Purchase Ledger & Arrears Supervisor

£22000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: If you are an experienced super...

Recruitment Genius: Graphic Web Designer

£23000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Due to expansion, this leading ...

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss