© Ella Ling

Miami 2012 - Fleming and Hutchins

Colin Fleming: Brits feeding off collective success


Colin Fleming and Ross Hutchins take on the young American brothers Ryan and Christian Harrison for a place in the quarter-finals of the men’s doubles at the US Open on Sunday. The Britons reached the last eight last year and are hoping for more success. In an interview, Fleming said that all the British players in New York are feeding off each other’s success.

You had a good win today. How do you feel your form is?
Today was really encouraging. The second set of the first set and today was our best level for a couple of months. Even though we won Eastbourne, we probably played better here than then. So that’s encouraging, that we played well, especially today. If we’d not have played at the top of our games, we might have lost. It was similar to the first round of Australia, we played Ryan Sweeting and Ryan Harrison. They were playing well and we really stepped up to the plate, today was a similar match and if we play like that against the Harrisons then I think we have a chance. The reality is we probably won’t play our best every match but we’re in a position now where we can go into every match and try to find a way to win it and keep progressing.

Britain are having a good US Open with Laura Robson doing well and Andy Murray going strong, and lots of doubles success. Is everyone feeding off each other?
I think it’s been a pretty good year in general. All the way back to Australia was good; we had a big Davis Cup win, Fed Cup’s been doing well, Olympics, Wimbledon was good. I think we’ve had a positive year for British tennis. We’re still represented in every event on the middle Saturday, I’m playing mixed, Laura’s going well, Andy’s going well and Jamie and Ken are in doubles, so you’ve got to take that – not many nations have got that.

I think there is no doubt in men’s doubles, there’s been an effect of that sort of nature. I think we’ve got about eight in the top 100 now, whereas thinking back it was James Auckland, who works with us a bit now, he was top 100 and no one else was. It was like wow, he’s 60 or whatever. It’s amazing now, not to say that 60’s not a good ranking but it’s different perspectives on everything. It’s now Jonny Marray’s No 1 at 21 or whatever he is, so now it’s like can anyone get top 20. It just raises the bar and everyone gets driven on by it and it’s been a really nice atmosphere. Having Laura and Andy winning, familiar faces, it’s a good time.

Is the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals still a realistic proposition?
We haven’t given up on it but we’ve not been so focused on it because we’ve fallen down in the race and we’ve not been checking the race all the time. But in the back of our minds, we’re aware that if we had a really good run here we might be right back in the frame, which would b great because we’ll go from here into the indoor season in Asia where we can play well, we’ve both won a few titles indoors. So if we could get ourselves back in it and have that season to come, that would be a real nice position but it’s about just one match at a time, playing our best here.