Heather Watson granted Wimbledon wild card

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The Independent Online

British number two Heather Watson has been granted a Wimbledon wild card.

The 19-year-old yesterday broke into the top 100 for the first time, reaching 93 in the world after becoming the first British woman for 17 years to win a round at the French Open.

The world's top 100 gain automatic entry into all grand slam tournaments but Watson's jump from 117 came after the Wimbledon cut-off point.

Watson, who won the junior US Open in 2009, made her first grand slam appearance at Wimbledon last year after being given a wild card but lost in the first round.

The Guernsey-born player yesterday beat South Chanelle Scheepers, a South African ranked four places above her, to reach the second round of the AEGON Classic at Edgbaston.

The All England Club have also extended wild card invitations to Laura Robson, the former Junior Wimbledon champion, Naomi Broady, Katie O'Brien and Emily Webley-Smith.

On the men's side, former Wimbledon quarter-finalist Arnaud Clement has received a wild card along with British trio James Ward, Daniel Cox and Daniel Evans plus Colombian Alejandro Falla.

Ward, the British number two behind Andy Murray, yesterday beat Cox in the first round of the AEGON Championships at Queen's Club.

O'Brien, who is ranked 216 in the world, gave her reaction to receiving a wild card on Twitter.

She posted: "Absolutely thrilled to have been awarded a main draw WC (wild card) at Wimbledon. I'm so lucky. Many thanks to the AELTC for giving me this opportunity."

Three further wildcards on the men's and women's side will be announced before Wimbledon begins on June 20.

Watson and Robson have also been given wildcards in the doubles, to pair up with Jocelyn Rae and Anne Keothavong respectively, while Sarah Borwell will compete with Melanie South.

In the men's doubles, Jamie Delgado and Jonathan Marray, Chris Eaton and Josh Goodall plus Colin Fleming and Ross Hutchins have received wildcards.