Ross Hutchins’s clay court season might be in tatters but former British number one Greg Rusedski has backed him to bounce back in style at the London 2012 Olympics.
Wimbledon’s doubles specialist Hutchins has missed the last month with a wrist injury, while regular partner Colin Fleming suffered a stress fracture of his left tibia while preparing for the Monte Carlo Masters – ruling him out of action for the French Open, which starts next week, and possibly Wimbledon.
But they should be back on court together in mid-June and Rusedski believes that should give enough time for the pairing to reignite a partnership, that has seen them reach two Grand Slam quarter-finals, before the Olympics begin on July 27.
“Hopefully, Colin will get healthy and can look forward to the Olympics,” said Rusedski, speaking at the Barclays Ball Kids trials.
“I think Andy Murray will probably play with his brother Jamie for the doubles and then probably Ross and Colin will be the other team.
“They will be looking forward to playing well at the Olympics and trying to win a few more tour events and be the stalwart team for the Davis Cup.
“They have started the season well but you never know how injuries will disrupt a team, especially a doubles partnership.
“And the main thing will be how they perform on the big stage, the Olympics, turning that good start into something solid when it really matters.
“That is the next test and, hopefully, they have no lasting injury concerns and they can do just that.”
Rusedski has his own Olympic experiences having competed at both the 1996 and 2000 Games, failing to make it past the second round on both occasions.
But he believes the magic of a home Olympics may yet work wonders for Hutchins and co.
“Tennis is going to get a boost from the London 2012 Olympics,” he added.
“You are going to have the Olympics at Wimbledon for the first time in its history and I don’t think we will see this again – not in my lifetime at least.
“It is a wonderful year for tennis and a fantastic opportunity for the GB guys like Ross to have an amazing tournament.”
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