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Holly hits her cue for Centre stage comeback.

A dog stopped play yesterday and it belonged to red-faced referee Ann Jones, Birmingham's 1969 Wimbledon champion, writes MICHAEL WARD.

It made a change to see the English still around on quarter-finals day, but this was an English setter called Holly, turning up uninvited on Centre Court.

This was the same Holly who invaded the same turf and started digging for an imaginary bone on the baseline last summer. Yesterday, the loose canine wandered on to the court and licked Nicole Arendt in sympathy as the American trailed 4-6, 2-4 to Nathalie Tauziat.

As Jones hid her embarrassment in her referee's office, Holly was frogmarched back to her owner by tournament announcer Tony Little. "You're a bad dog," Jones admonished.

"Actually, I thought it was fun," Tauziat said. "It's nice to get a bit of light relief on court."

It was revealed last night that Alexandra Stevenson had to borrow coach Craig Kardon's size 11 tennis shoes on her DFS Classic debut this week, after her own were found to be unsuitable for grass.

The 6ft 1in American teenager even arrived in Birmingham last weekend without a single outfit, after forgetting to pack her kit. She had to buy a tennis dress off the rack from the Priory club shop.
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Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Jun 12, 1999
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