Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Fellow Brits Hoping to Follow in Andy's Footsteps

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Fellow Brits Hoping to Follow in Andy's Footsteps

Article excerpt

THREE players heavily influenced by Andy Murray were hoping to join the former Wimbledon champion in the Australian Open second round.

James Ward, Kyle Edmund and Heather Watson have all spent time training or playing alongside Murray recently, Watson hailing him as a "great role model" for British players.

She partnered Murray in the Hopman Cup in Perth and then won her second WTAT AT Tour title in title in T Hobart ; Ward and Edmund have both trained with the world number six in Florida.

"We worked really hard, we both pushed each other," said world number 103 Ward, whose ranking gained him direct entry into the main draw for the first time and his clash with 32nd seed Fernando Verdasco.

"It opened my eyes a lot to see how hard one of the top players in the world works, and knowing I have done the same gives me a lot of con-fidence going into this tournament.

"I have known I could play at this level for a long time, it was just about getting things together at the right time and being more consistent. …

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