Tsonga clash gives fired-up Baker food for thought

 

Queen's Club

Jamie Baker saw Jo-Wilfried Tsonga's thrilling French Open quarter-final against Novak Djokovic on television last week and said to the person he was watching it with: "I wonder what I'd actually do if I played one of these guys."

The world No 203 was thinking exactly the same last night after a 7-6, 6-3 victory over his fellow Briton, Oliver Golding, earned a second-round meeting with Tsonga, the world No 5, at the Aegon Championships here this afternoon. It will be the biggest match of the 25-year-old Scot's career.

"I've just got to enjoy the match," Baker said. "I've never played somebody ranked as highly as that in a competitive match. He's an unbelievable athlete. That's obviously what I train for, to get opportunities to play against people like that."

The win over 18-year-old Golding, the reigning US Open boys' champion, will put Baker into the world's top 200 for the first time after a career dogged by illness and injury. "It looked like I was going to get there a lot earlier, but I've had setbacks and the journey has been quite a long and hard one," he said.

Baker and Andy Murray, who faces a tricky opening match today against France's Nicolas Mahut, are the only Britons left in the singles. James Ward, who reached the semi-finals last year, and Liam Broady both went out to big-serving opponents. Ward was beaten 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 by South Africa's Kevin Anderson, while 18-year-old Broady lost 6-1, 6-2 to Luxembourg's Gilles Muller.

Britons fared better at the Aegon Classic at Edgbaston. Tara Moore, 19, defied a gap of 267 places in the rankings to beat the Czech Republic's Iveta Benesova 6-1, 6-2. Anne Keothavong beat Austria's Tamira Paszek 6-2, 7-5, Laura Robson beat the American Grace Min 6-4, 6-1 and Mel South beat Croatia's Mirjana Lucic 6-1, 4-6, 6-3.

Wimbledon have announced their first batch of wild cards. Men's wild cards have gone to Tommy Haas and Lleyton Hewitt. Women's wild cards have been awarded to Robson and Heather Watson.

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there