The show goes on - Wimbledon 2018 opens without Andy Murray

PA

Andy Murray's withdrawal from Wimbledon may have left many fans disappointed but "the show must go on".

On the eve of the Championships, the two-time champion announced that he would not be playing at SW19 in order to continue his rehab and recovery following hip surgery.

Thanks for all the messages of support today.. Sorry for anyone who feels let down but I need to look at the bigger...

Posted by Andy Murray on Sunday, July 1, 2018

It is the fourth straight grand slam Murray has withdrawn from and tennis fans queuing for tickets on Sunday near the famous south-west London grounds said they were disappointed the Scot would not feature this year.

Wimbledon chief executive Richard Lewis said Murray's withdrawal was disappointing.

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Speaking as the gates opened at 10.30am and fans flooded into the grounds, he added: "It is awful for Andy, it is tough - tough for him personally.

"Obviously it is disappointing, but the show goes on.

"We know the British players well and it is a shame for him - we wish him well. A year from now we may be taking about what a great decision he made."

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Renate Davies, from Oxford, said she was "really, really sad" to hear about Murray.

The 62-year-old joined her friend, Alex Rivers, 65, also from Oxford, in the queue on Sunday.

2018 Wimbledon Preview - Day Two - All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club
2018 Wimbledon Preview - Day Two - All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club

Ms Davies said: "We are so sad. I am surprised because I was really hoping his fitness would be better and that he might get to Centre Court."

But Murray's absence did not deter the crowds from joining the world famous queue.

The fans were bathed in sunshine as they waited to be allowed in.

The Met Office forecast for the All England Club predicts dry, sunny weather and temperatures in the mid-20Cs for much of this week.

Wimbledon Park, where fans began camping at the weekend, reached 30.4C (86.7F) on Sunday afternoon.

2018 Wimbledon Preview - Day Two - All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club
2018 Wimbledon Preview - Day Two - All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club

Defending champion Roger Federer will begin his campaign under the sun - with the mercury expected to peak at 29C (84.2C) - playing Serbia's Dusan Lajovic on Centre Court.

SPORT Wimbledon
SPORT Wimbledon