British tennis player Marcus Willis, who is best known for his run at the Wimbledon Championships in 2016 where he met Roger Federer in the second round, says he was happy to play singles for the first time in more than two years at the recent Battle of the Brits event in the UK but will continue to focus on doubles on the tour in the future.
Marcus Willis on playing singles at the Battle of the Brits event
According to Eurosport, the 29 year old Willis says while he enjoyed playing singles, he will continue to focus on doubles in the months ahead since it is more suited for him at this stage in his career.
He also says he will try to play singles at upcoming British events like the Battle of the Brits event. "I love playing singles and if I was 23 then I'd try and pursue it, but I'm 30 in October so I've got to think about what the best thing to do for my career is.
I wouldn't have played singles at all if it wasn't for this tournament - who's to say I won't play more? I don't have a ranking so it will be difficult to get into international events, but in British tours and these events, absolutely."
Willis made the headlines in 2016 when he reached the main draw at Wimbledon with a ranking of No. 772 in the world. He came through the qualifying draw to enter the main draw. In the first round, he defeated Ričardas Berankis, who was ranked more than 700 places higher than him, and advanced to a second round clash against Roger Federer.
Although he was beaten in straight sets by the Swiss legend Federer, Willis won the hearts of the British public with his run during the event. One of his shots , a lob against Federer, was voted the best shot of the Wimbledon tournament during a BBC poll for that year.
At the 2017 Wimbledon Championships, he lost in the final round of qualifying to Illya Marchenko in straight sets but reached the third round in doubles with Jay Clarke. The duo defeated defending champions and second seeds Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert in the second round before losing to Oliver Marach and Mate Pavić in the third round. Marcus Willis is currently ranked No. 1382 in the ATP doubles rankings.