Federer begins bid for ninth Wimbledon title as Murray misses out

Federer is hoping for his ninth Wimbledon title. Credit: PA

Wimbledon starts with Roger Federer making a bid for a ninth title but this year will see the tournament take place without home favourite Andy Murray.

Two-time champion Murray announced his withdrawal from the championships on Sunday, saying he needs to continue his rehab and recovery following hip surgery.

It is the fourth straight grand slam Murray has withdrawn from and tennis fans queuing for tickets on Sunday near the famous south-west London grounds said they were disappointed the Scot would not feature this year.

Murray said he took the decision “with regret” and thanked people for their messages of support.

The 31-year-old’s withdrawal means he will miss his home major for the first time since a wrist injury kept him away in 2007.

Federer will begin his defence of the title by playing Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic on Centre Court.

Leading the charge for the British women is Johanna Konta, who begins her campaign against Natalia Vikhlyantseva, the world number 106 from Russia, on Tuesday.

Murray’s absence means more attention on British number one Kyle Edmund.

The 23-year-old, who will equal a career-high ranking of 17 on Monday, comes into the the tournament having reached the semi-finals of the Australian Open.

He faces Australian qualifier Alex Bolt in his first round match on Tuesday.

Larissa Lamb, from Teddington, was among those in the queue. Credit: PA

The Met Office forecast for the All England Club predicts dry, sunny weather and temperatures in the mid-20Cs for much of this week.

Wimbledon Park, where fans began camping at the weekend, reached 30.4C on Sunday afternoon.

Forecaster Simon Partridge said any stoppage of play due to the weather is unlikely, with only a low risk of a shower first thing on Monday morning before play starts.

Brits in action on the opening day of the 2018 Championships will be Liam Broady, Harriet Dart, Katie Swan and Cameron Norrie.