When I was growing up in England, Wimbledon was synonymous with summer. On a long warm afternoon, the plink of tennis balls being struck was as much an indication of the time of year as the scent of newly mown grass. And for the past seven years, the story of Josh and Ryan has always been in the back of my mind as I’ve watched Wimbledon.
So, this is their story. It was a terrible, awful thing to write, because I had to rewatch so many of my favourite tennis moments just to fact check. Like the time Hrbaty sat down next to Federer at the changeover during their last match and they chattered away, wreathed in smiles, or when Jonny Marray pointed out to the umpire in the Wimbledon doubles final that he’d touched the net, thus conceding a point, before going on to win. Or the time when Llodra’s shot killed a bird that had flown into the middle of the match, chasing a moth. Not that that was such a feel-good factor because of the poor bird, but as Llodra said afterwards, at least he saved the moth.
The Unforgiving Minute, published by Dreamspinner Press, is released today.