Bloomfield makes progress at Wimbledon

PUBLISHED: 09:51 28 June 2006 | UPDATED: 11:06 22 October 2010

Norfolk tennis star Richard Bloomfield made his mark on Wimbledon yesterday with a sensational first round victory over Argentinian Carlos Berlocq.

Norfolk tennis star Richard Bloomfield made his mark on Wimbledon yesterday with a sensational first round victory over Argentinian Carlos Berlocq.

The 23-year old from Norwich conceded only five games against a player 170 places above him in the world rankings, wrapping the match up in just one hour and 19 minutes.

It was a case of third time lucky for Bloomfield, who lost his previous first round matches at the All England Club in 2003 and 2004 and failed to qualify last year.

“You've got to be happy with any win in a Grand Slam event, especially for someone of my ranking,” Bloomfield told the Eastern Daily Press afterwards. “This has to be the best of my career.

“I chose to serve and volley a lot and just really try and put the pressure on him. I don't think he liked the serve jammed into his body.

“A guy like that, a clay courter, likes to kick the serve in and rally for as long as possible, But being on the grass I was getting opportunities. I was trying to keep the rallies short, and that's what happened. You just have to rush him, and I did that well.

“I felt my game was good coming into this tournament.

“It's pretty tough for me being tall with all the bending down on the grass, but it's been sunny for the last couple of weeks and the ground has got very hard and a bit quicker, so I felt as if my game was going well.”

Bloomfield won't care that his win came against a clay-court specialist who appeared uneasy on grass from the first point.

A player can only beat the opponent in front of him, and the Norfolk right-hander did that in style.

At no point did he look in any trouble, holding his serve from the start and then breaking two of Berlocq's opening three service games to take complete control of the match.

The only disappointment was the relatively small crowd around court 17 as fans were sidetracked by the matches involving Tim Henman and Andre Agassi.

In round two Bloomfield will face a much tougher prospect in No 19 seed Tommy Haas of Germany, one of the most consistent performers on the mens' circuit over the past 10 years.

“That's going to be a hard one,” admitted Bloomfield.

“He was a number three in the world at one point, had some bad injuries and it's good to see him back because he's a good player, a world class player.

“No disrespect to the guy I played today, but I'm going to have to be at my very best to get anything off him.

“But that's what playing tournaments like this is all about - putting yourself up against the very best.”

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