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Keothavong: I will fight back

PUBLISHED: 11:06 26 June 2009 | UPDATED: 16:17 07 September 2010

CUMBERLAND'S Anne Keothavong has vowed to fight on after Tuesday s traumatic first round defeat at Wimbledon. The British No.1 had a set point at 5-3 in the opening set against the lower ranked Patricia Mayr of Austria but then suffered a total collapse,

CUMBERLAND'S Anne Keothavong has vowed to fight on after Tuesday's traumatic first round defeat at Wimbledon.

The British No.1 had a set point at 5-3 in the opening set against the lower ranked Patricia Mayr of Austria but then suffered a total collapse, winning only two more games, to lose 5-7, 2-6.

Keothavong, who has made giant strides in her career over the past year to crack the world top 50, left her press conference in tears after being asked whether she had let people down by losing to Mayr, who is ranked 29 places below her in the world rankings.

"I've let myself down more than anything," Keothavong exclusively told Ham&High Sport.

"I had higher expectations. I started off well and felt I was the better player.

"But I got a little tentative and allowed her to play herself back into the match and I think I lacked the confidence to go through with it.

"I wanted to fight - I'm a fighter - and hang in there and find a way. But it was just not happening for me and that is just the way it is sometimes."

The 25-year-old admitted that her recent lack of confidence can be traced back to her 6-0, 6-0 whitewash by the World No.1 Dinara Safina in the French Open at Roland Garros.

"At the time I thought I dealt with it well," said Keothavong. "But obviously it knocked my confidence more than I would have liked.

"Tennis gives you highs and lows and going through that is something I never experienced before.

"It is quite a tough thing to recover from and with my results the past couple of weeks on grass you can see that.

"I know it was against the World No.1 but of course there is the pride aspect. Maybe that scoreline did not reflect the match but the scoreline is what is recorded."

Keothavong, who started her competitive career under Peter Neathey at South Hampstead TC, is determined to find her form in the doubles at Wimbledon later this week.

She is scheduled to partner Sarah Borwell in the women's event and Ross Hutchins in the mixed. "It will be hard to continue playing at Wimbledon this week but I enjoy playing doubles," she said.

"I've got to come back and give my best to that."

After her doubles Keothavong is planning to take some time off. "I'm going to take a bit of break and try to regroup," she said.

"I'm not sure when my next tournament is but it will probably be in the United States somewhere. I guess now that I'm out of the tournament it will be a relief to get away.

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