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2002 December 22 - Henman on state of British tennis

Tim Henman is couldn't help vent his concerns over the state British tennis following the departure of the Lawn Tennis Association's (LTA) performance director Patrice Hagelauer. Mr Hagelauer is set to take on the role of British Davis Cup captain, surely a waste of serious French talent?

Speaking to the Sunday Times, Tim said:

"Losing Patrice is a huge blow. I thought he had as good a chance as anybody of finally making the long overdue impact.

"I would not call the job mission impossible, but it is certainly getting on in that direction. You have to try to change an entire culture in the way we approach tennis, and I cannot see how that can be done.

"There's no way of avoiding the fact, I do fear for British tennis. Aside from Greg Rusedski and myself, the rankings are worse now than they have been for a long time.

"A decade ago, when Bill Knight was in charge and I had just set out, we had seven players in the top 200. What have we got now?

"It is imperative the LTA find the right man. I can't see anyone currently involved as having the right credentials.

"Patrice tried to implement change, and unless there is somebody with the same theories, it's going to be a case of starting again."

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