Wimbledon's fabled 'Hill' saw Murray defeat coming

Wed Jul 2, 2014 2:38pm EDT
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By Michael Roddy

LONDON (Reuters) - It's not been a good year for British sport. First England exited the World Cup in unseemly haste, and now defending champion Andy Murray has left Wimbledon almost as fast.

Worse, nobody was much surprised. Murray's match on Wednesday lasted just three sets, and they were mostly dominated by his opponent, Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov.

The huge video screen watched by thousands at Wimbledon flashed that Twitter comments showed the local fans and the rest of the world agreed - Murray would lose.

"We're huge Murray fans but he wasn't playing his best," Caroline Sugden of Leicester, England, said after the British champ's defeat.

Prince William and his wife, the Duchess of Cambridge, watched from the Royal Box on Center Court, but Sugden and her daughter left their seats on Court No. 1 to join the crowd on "the Hill", the epicenter of support for British players in the tournament.

"We've sat here many times and watched him, we've eaten Murray Mints and all the rest to help, but at the end of the day I think he was well beaten today," Sugden said.

Lee Williams, a DJ from Reading, England, perched on "the Hill" with his wife Claire, a pharmacist, noted that the English invented a lot of the sports in which they have suffered recent defeats.

"We had a good couple of years, with the (2012) Olympics, winning gold, and the year after that winning Wimbledon, so we just take off the rest of this year and there'll be next year," Williams said.   Continued...

Andy Murray of Britain attends a news conference after being defeated by Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria in their men's singles quarter-final tennis match at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships, in London July 2, 2014.  REUTERS/Billie Weiss/AELTC/Pool