Wimbledon 2013: Lleyton Hewitt concentrates on tennis after exit as Australian sport struggles

Defeat of former Wimbledon champion leaves two Australians left in the singles

Wimbledon

The genteel surrounds of SW19 were rocking to chants of 'C'mon Aussie', and 'Aussie Aussie Aussie, Oi, Oi, Oi' as Lleyton Hewitt attempted to breathe life into the Australia's ailing sense of sporting superiority.

The chants, however, were soon stilled as Hewitt, the champion here way back in 2002, succumbed in four sets to German qualifier Dustin Brown, the world 189. His defeat leaves two Australians left in the singles at Wimbledon, Bernard Tomic, the last surviving Aussie male of the five that began the main draw, and ladies No.14 seed Samantha Stosur.

Hewitt's lame exit followed the Wallabies' defeat to the British & Irish Lions in the first rugby union Test on Saturday, and the travails of the cricket team. He crashed 6-2 in the final set having raised Aussie hopes – and the volume of the 14 gold-shirted fanatics sat courtside in a colourful bloc - by taking the third set with an impressively executed tie-break.

Clive Woodward, the man who masterminded England's 2003 Rugby World Cup win in Australia, said that Australian sport was struggling because it no longer invested in, and backed, world-class coaches. Hewitt, however,would not be drawn on whether his exit was symptomatic of a wider malaise. “I'm out of Wimbledon, that's all I've got to say.”

He said. Pressed to focus specifically on tennis he added: “It is good to see some of the young guys qualifying, now they need to make the step to the top 20-25. Bernie (Tomic)'s obviously got the best chance.”

Brown is a better player than his ranking suggests. His idiosyncratic style is such he is unlikely to win big matches consistently but he was too strong and too slick for Hewitt. The Fanatics were left to into their cry into their expensively acquired beers.

Meanwhile, in Taunton, England discard Nick Compton scored 81 as Somerset moved past 200 for the loss of two wicket in the Aussie's opening tour match

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.

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