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
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: Sales Administrator - Fixed Term Contract

£17500 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We currently require an experie...

Recruitment Genius: Partner Manager - EMEA

£50000 - £100000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Partner Manager is required ...

Recruitment Genius: Regional Sales Manager - OTE £100,000

£45000 - £100000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Regional Sales Manager is re...

Recruitment Genius: IT Support Engineer

£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The company provides IT support...

Day In a Page

Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific