Simon Reed

ATP – How the Brits will fare in 2011

Simon Reed

View photo


I've spoken before about what I expect Andy Murray to do this year but, unfortunately, it's hard to see much hope for the male Brits beneath him in the rankings.

It's tricky for them for a variety of reasons - Alex Bogdanovic is the obvious man to look out for, but we've been watching him for a number of years now and it's yet to happen.

People often question whether he works hard enough but, to be honest, I don't see the issue as a lack of work ethic.

I think his problem is that he cannot finish matches off from winning positions. It's a monkey he has to get off his back

He's got a lot of talent, and he can dominate people - his talent speaks for itself - but we've seen too many matches which he should have won but hasn't - and if he can't overcome that this year then the results simply aren't going to come this way.

Only he knows if he's been working hard enough. I suspect there was a time when he didn't, but I'm sure that's not the case any more.

Ultimately, whether Britain's men have a good year is almost entirely dependent on Murray.

Not only on his personal performances, but also whether he plays in the Davis Cup - which he's hinting he might.

If he plays the first match, and manages to fit a few further matches into his schedule, then it'll be a massive boost to British tennis.

If he can't then we're going to struggle again.

The problem is that I don't really see anyone coming through, anyone exciting enough to really help Murray.

Oliver Golding has got a big game, an even bigger attitude, and I really like what he stands for - but is he going to move well enough at the highest level?

I think movement is the key part of his game that he needs to address, and if he can do that then he could have a good year because his temperament is good.

He seems to enjoy the trappings of professional tennis, the limelight for example, but he has to work on that movement. 

Most things are in place now to nurture any talent that's there, though: we've got some terrific facilities in the UK. A lot of people don't agree with me, but I actually do think that the set-up is pretty good.

The Lawn Tennis Association have finally understood that for too long British players have been mollycoddled and don't have the killer instinct needed to break into the top 50, or even the top 100.

The world of professional tennis is incredibly tough, and it needs to be seen as such by the players if they're to have any hope of surviving, let alone thriving.

It's needed a special person like Andy Murray, who isn't really a product of the LTA - he broke through later on and wasn't really nurtured by them.

We have to get more people with Andy Murray's commitment and drive, and I think that'll happen in spite of the LTA - not because of it.

Ultimately, it could be another tricky year for the Brits on the ATP Tour.

View Comments