Cameron Norrie revels in being last British star standing at Wimbledon ahead of quarter-finals
Cameron Norrie is certainly readying himself for the attention of being the last British standard barer in the Wimbledon singles.
A nickname? You can call me Nozza, he suggested, without dropping a beat.
There’s no appropriate synonym for ‘Hill’ that starts with C or N, Cameron Kop was mooted before he squashed such talk by claiming to be a fan of Newcastle United. And Fulham. And Glasgow Rangers.
He may be the home number one but we’re going to have to get to know Norrie very quickly in the days ahead, after he beat practice partner Tommy Paul 6-4 7-5 6-4 to become the first British man to reach the singles quarter-finals since Andy ‘Muzza’ Murray five years ago.
“At the beginning of the tournament people talked about the pressure and expectation on my shoulders as British number one and I’ve just tried to embrace that,” he said. “Now I’m the last one standing, I just hope that just gives people even more reason to get behind me.
“I’m going a match at a time, there’s no reason to be satisfied with the quarter-finals and I’m just enjoying playing at this level.
“The top players get better as tournaments progress. I was pretty nervous with my first round match and I’ve played my best two matches in the third and fourth round. My levels are getting better and I’m feeling calmer in the bigger matches too.
“I’m going to keep pushing and I’ve got a difficult and experienced player next.”
He will face Belgium’s David Goffin, who has struggled with injuries in the last two years to drop from his career high ranking of seven to world number 58.
“He’s a very experienced player who likes the grass, he’s got a very complete game,” added Norrie.
“He’s been in this situation more than me, he won’t serve me off the court but it’ll be a physical match. I’m confident I can handle the occasion.”
Goffin came through a near five-hour marathon to advance in a five-set thriller too - and acknowledges the task is tough.
“I just need to recover now and then be ready to play against the whole country,” said Goffin, who lost their only previous encounter on clay in Barcelona last year.
“He’s played a lot less than me and he’s been playing well through the tournament. He is very consistent and a tough opponent.”
For the latest action on the British summer grass court season, check out the LTA Website