Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Reborn Tim Storms into the Quarters at Queen's

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Reborn Tim Storms into the Quarters at Queen's

Article excerpt


TIM HENMAN, armed with a new strategy for playing on grass, moved confidently into the quarterfinals of the Stella Artois Championships at Queen's today, defeating Nicolas Mahut, of France, 6-3, 6-4 in just 75 minutes.

The early finish enabled Henman to make it home in time to watch England's clash with Trinidad & Tobago. The British No3 said: "I was very happy when the schedule came out and I warned Andy Roddick, who is on later, that he could be playing in front or six or seven foreigners!"

Henman, who is now ranked No76 in the world - two places above Mahut, showed the centre court spectators the full range of shots he has incorporated into a new grass-court game designed to counter the slower balls and courts that now define this version of the sport.

It has taken Henman four years to work out that grass court tennis has fundamentally changed and now the penny has dropped, the four times Wimbledon semi-finalist believes he can remain a threat at SW19 rather than a relic of a bygone era.

He next faces Dmirty Tursunov, who has beaten Henman in three of the last four Grand Slam events. The Russian saw him off at Wimbledon last year and this season's Australian and French Opens. Tursunov, the 15th seed, defeated Yeu-Tzuoo Wang 6-3, 3-6, 6-1 today to reach the last eight.

This is Henman's first quarterfinal since he made the same stage of the Dubai event in March - highlighting the lack of success that has blighted his game in recent months.

Despite poor results, Henman has remained confident that his fitness and form are better than his world ranking would suggest.

After three confident wins at Queen's - including one over Andre Agassi - he is absolutely right. Having come to terms with the different conditions that now make Wimbledon a much slower tournament, the 31-year-old can look forward to further success at Queen's and Wimbledon. …

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