By Jack Lacey-Hatton, at the Queen's Club
Dan Evans cursed fine margins after a first-round defeat to Matteo Berrettini in the LTA’s cinch Championships at the Queen’s Club.
Evans, 32, believed he was unlucky in a straight sets 6-3 6-3 defeat, with defending champion Berrettini producing a performance on the other side of the net that left little room for error.
The British star came into the Championship fresh from winning the Nottingham Open last week, but found the Italian in fine form on his favourite surface.
“It was a good match,” said Evans. “All credit to Matteo he put a lot of pressure on my serve.
“To be honest I thought returning and staying patient was the best part of my game. I created a few chances and returned pretty well.
“I just didn’t serve great but that is the pressure of playing a big guy who really goes after the first serve.
“It was a good level and I was a bit unlucky. This week could have gone better but that is how it goes on the tour sometimes.
“I played pretty good today, just not as good as him. It was a game of small margins, I had a chance in the second but he is a great player and it was tough.”
The British No.2 also believes, on that form, the Italian who was runner-up at Wimbledon last year as well as Queen’s Club champion, has a great chance of retaining his title this week.
Evans commented: “If he is fit this week he will be very difficult to stop. Particularly playing like that.
“He has obviously been injured so is motivated to come back. So he’ll be seeing this week as a big chance."