WIMBLEDON â€“ The clock has not yet struck midnight for American Brian Baker who has made a surprising comeback to the tour, after being away from years due to surgeries. Baker who had qualify to play Wimbledon has made it through the qualifying tournament to the round of 16 with a 6â€‘4, 4â€‘6, 6â€‘1, 6â€‘3 victory over Benoit Paire on Saturday at Wimbledon
â€œIt’s been unreal,â€ Baker said of his current run from playing Challengers to making his charge to the round of 16 at Wimbledon.Â â€œWhen I’m on the court I know I definitely have nerves.Â Closing out the match you definitely know what’s on the table, what you can accomplish.
â€œI mean, I missed a few shots at the end that I probably wouldn’t miss if it was the quarters of a challenger and not trying to get to the round of 16 at Wimbledon.
â€œIt is crazy kind of what’s going on.Â But I’m still trying to stay focused on the task at hand and not get too wrapped around.
â€œBecause once you do that, I think it’s tough to be able to play your best tennis once you’re happy that you’ve been there.Â So I’m trying to every match go in there hungry and try to win the next one instead of, I’m in the Round of 16 of Wimbledon; this is awesome.
â€œI think it’s great when you can play on any of the biggest courts at each of the Grand Slams,â€ said Baker.Â â€œI’ve played at Louis Armstrong at the Open; I’ve played now Chatrier at the French; haven’t played the Australian yet.
â€œI think it’s awesome anytime you can go out and play on one of those courts just because not that many people in the world get to do that.
If I ever get a chance to play on it, it would be great.Â I don’t know when I was watching the tennis at that time.Â I guess I was probably in the middle of recovering from one or another surgery.Â I don’t know if I was thinking, I’m going to be playing right there.
â€œEver since a child, I’ve always dreamed it would be great to play on Centre Court at Wimbledon.
Baker will go up against 27th seed Philipp KohlschreiberÂ on Monday.