James Ward (tennis)

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James Ward
James Ward 2013.jpg
Full name James Ward[1]
Country (sports) United Kingdom Great Britain
Residence London, England
Born (1987-02-09) 9 February 1987 (age 28)
Dunblane, Scotland
Height 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Turned pro 2006
Plays Right-handed (two-handed backhand)
Coach(es) Darren Tandy (2014–present)
Prize money $1,045,263
Career record 25–50
Career titles 0
4 Challenger, 5 Futures
Highest ranking No. 89 (13 July 2015)
Current ranking No. 155 (16 November 2015)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open 1R (2012, 2015)
French Open 1R (2014)
Wimbledon 3R (2015)
US Open 1R (2015)
Career record 2–11
Career titles 0
Highest ranking No. 233 (29 August 2011)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Wimbledon 2R (2009)
Team competitions
Davis Cup W (2015)
Last updated on: 16 November 2015.

James Ward (born 9 February 1987 in London) is an British tennis player. He is British No. 4 behind Andy Murray, Aljaž Bedene and Kyle Edmund and enjoys playing on clay more than any other surface.[2] He reached the quarterfinals of the 2010 Aegon International and the semifinals of the 2011 Aegon Championships as a wildcard entry.

Early and personal life[edit]

His father, Jim, is a taxi driver. Ward picked up a tennis racquet aged 11, attended the Equelite Juan Carlos Ferrero Academy near Valencia for four years, and currently trains in London.[2] Ward is a fan of football club Arsenal.[3] At one time, Ward was so strapped for cash he had to sell his Gunners season ticket to help pay for his tennis career.[4]


Ward at the 2012 US Open

He made his first tour appearance in Valencia in 2007 as a wild card but lost in the first round.[2]

Ward qualified for only his second ATP tour event, the 2008 Stella Artois Championships at the Queen's Club in London. In the first round on 9 June he met former US Open and Australian Open champion, Russian player Marat Safin. Ward took the first set after breaking Safin in the third game of the match and managed to hold his serve for the rest of the set to take it 6–4. However Safin upped his game in the second set, gained an early break and won the set comfortably 6–1. Ward was also broken early in the deciding set losing 6–4, 1–6, 4–6.[5][6]


In 2009, he competed in the play-offs that were created by Davis Cup captain John Lloyd to find two more players for Great Britain to face Ukraine. In these, he competed in the previous longest match in tennis history, lasting 6 hours and 40 minutes, against fellow Brit Chris Eaton. Eaton won the match 6–3, 6–2, 6–7, 2–6, 21–19.

In May, he became the first British player to win a challenger title on clay since Tim Henman in 1995. He beat Carsten Ball in the final of the Sarasota Open in Florida, USA.[7] This win propelled him into the top 250 of the ATP's rankings.


In March, Ward made his Davis Cup debut in the Europe/Africa Zone Group II tie vs Lithuania, in Vilnius, with Dan Evans, Ken Skupski and Colin Fleming. The Lithuanian side entered the tie as underdogs; fielding a team of teenagers.[8] Ward beat Lithuanian No2 Laurynas Grigelis 6-4, 6-2, 6-4 and became the first Briton other than Tim Henman, Greg Rusedski or Andy Murray to win a live rubber since Andrew Richardson beat Zimbabwe's Byron Black in 1997.[9] Evans lost the second singles match, Fleming and Skupski won their doubles, but Ward and Evans were both beaten on the final day. This was described as a humiliating Davis Cup defeat for Great Britain,[10] and led to the resignation of Davis Cup Captain John Lloyd. Britain was now threatened with relegation to the third tier of the competition.

In June 2010, Ward reached his first ever ATP World Tour quarter-final at The Aegon International, Eastbourne, UK. Ward beat 2nd seeded Spaniard Feliciano López (who had beaten Rafael Nadal the week before) 6–3, 5–4 Retired. He followed it up with the other man to lose at the semi finals of Queens the week before, Rainer Schüttler, beating him 6–3, 7–6. He was eventually beaten by the young Ukrainian talent Alexandr Dolgopolov in straight sets, 3–6, 4–6.

The new Davis Cup Captain Leon Smith selected Ward to take part in Great Britain's vital Davis Cup tie vs Turkey, at Eastbourne, in July alongside Jamie Baker, Ken Skupski, Colin Fleming and Alex Ward(non player). Defeat would have meant Great Britain's relegation to Europe Zone Group III. Ward contributed to the victory by winning both his singles matches, Britain eventually winning 5-0, and giving Great Britain a first Davis Cup win in three years.[11]


Ward lost at the first hurdle in six of his seven tournaments at the beginning of this year. So when Leon Smith, Britain's Davis Cup captain selected his team for the Euro/Africa Zone Group II tie against Tunisia in March, he sprang a surprise, omitting Alex Bogdanovic, having recalled the 26-year-old to the squad after a three-year absence. Instead, Smith's singles players were Ward (No 214) and Jamie Baker (No 406), who had lost first time out in his last two events. Although Bogdanovic (No 374) had lost all six of his live Davis Cup rubbers, he had at least won a Futures tournament in the United States this year.[12] Ward played a key role in Great Britain's 4–1 victory, winning both his live singles rubbers, and ultimately clinching the tie by beating Malek Jaziri 3–6, 6–3, 3–6, 6–3, 8–6 in the fourth rubber.

At the Queen's Club Championships, he reached the semi-final of an ATP tour event for the first time. He defeated fourth seed and future grand slam champion Stanislas Wawrinka in straight sets in the second round.[13] Ward followed this up by defeating defending champion and 13th seed Sam Querrey, coming from a set down to win in three sets to equal his run at Eastbourne in 2010. Ward then defeated Adrian Mannarino in three sets despite missing seven match points in the second set tiebreaker.[14] He was eventually defeated by Jo Wilfried Tsonga 6–3 7–6, having held a set point in the second set tiebreaker.[15]

At Wimbledon Ward entered as a wildcard, but lost in the first round to Michaël Llodra.[16]

In July, Ward took part in the Davis Cup Luxembourg tie. Ward could not make good a ranking deficit of 106 places against world No 81 Gilles Muller, and he went down 6-3, 7-6, 6-1 in the first rubber.[17] Great Britain won 4-1, with Ward winning the dead rubber against unranked Laurent Bram, a full-time coach who played competitively when he could.

Following a short break, Ward's first tournament back was the Lexington Challenger. As top seed, Ward reached the final, losing to Wayne Odesnik. He was also runner-up in the doubles tournament. Two weeks later Ward won his second Challenger tournament of his career at the 2011 Odlum Brown Vancouver Open, defeating Robby Ginepri on 7 August. The win saw Ward rise to World No. 144. On 15 August ward rose to a career high ranking of No. 140.

In September, Ward was selected for the Davis Cup promotion tie against Hungary. In the first rubber, Ward had a sometimes dramatic 6-4 6-4 4-6 6-4 win over the visitors' No 1 Attila Balazs.The drama came not so much from any searing quality of tennis but Ward's constant battle with cramping in his leg and a queasiness that meant he had to nip backstage mid-match to empty the contents of his stomach. Ward had occasionally looked likely to default against an opponent ranked 262 in the world.[18] With Andy Murray, Colin Fleming and Ross Hutchins winning, Great Britain claimed a decisive 3-0 lead, and was promoted into Europe/Africa Zone Group I.


In January 2012 he qualified for his first Grand Slam outside of Wimbledon when he defeated Igor Sijsling 7–6, 6–2 to qualify for the first round of the 2012 Australian Open, where he lost in straight sets to Slovenian Blaž Kavčič. On 30 April 2012, Ward reached a career high ranking in singles of 137. At Wimbledon, Ward won his first ever match at a grand slam, coming through a gruelling five set match to defeat the World No. 36 Pablo Andújar 4–6, 6–0, 3–6, 6–3, 6–3. He won the final six games after trailing in the final set 0–3. In the second round Ward narrowly lost to Mardy Fish in another tough five setter 3–6, 7–5, 4–6, 7–6(7–4), 3–6.

In December, the Lawn Tennis Association announced that Ward was the only player in Britain’s top nine men to get funded next season, which is supported through Team Aegon.[19]

In December, Andy Murray invited Ward, Jamie Baker and Oliver Golding to his luxurious winter training base in Miami. [4] [20] [21]


In January 2013, Ward failed to qualify for the Australian Open, reaching the 3rd round of qualifying before losing to Julian Reister. Ward remained in Australia as he competed in the Charles Stuart Adelaide International, where he reached the final, defeating top seed Yūichi Sugita along the way, before losing 2–6 3–6 to home favourite Matthew Barton.

Ward was then selected for Great Britain's Davis Cup team for their Europe/Africa Zone Group I match against Russia in Coventry. Ward lost an epic first rubber to Evgeny Donskoy4–6 4–6 7–5 6–2 8–6 to give Russia a 2–0 lead heading into the doubles rubber the following day. The doubles pairing of Jonny Marray and Colin Fleming gave the home side some hope going into the final day of matches, where Ward opened the day. Ward stunned the much higher seeded Russian Dmitry Tursunov 6–4 5–7 5–7 6–4 6–4 to level the tie. Dan Evans would eventually complete a remarkable turnaround, with a straight sets victory over Donskoy.[22] The last time Great Britain had come from 2-0 down to win a Davis Cup tie was 83 years ago against Germany, Consequently, Great Britain won a place in the 16-team World Group play-offs in September. Ward had to be placed on a drip to help him recover from his efforts. The following Monday afternoon, Ward wasn't feeling well so he went to his local A and E, where they put hime on a drip, letting him go at midnight.[23]

Ward kicked off his clay season in China where he qualified for the An-Ning ATP $50,000 Challenger event and reached the final. His route to the final included a victory over fourth seed Josselin Ouanna 2–6 6–3 6–2. He lost to Hungarian Márton Fucsovics in the final 5–7 6–3 3–6.

Ward's first grass tournament was the annual event at the Queen's Club where he lost in the first round to Ivan Dodig 7–6 6–7 6–7 despite having two match points on serve in the second set.

In July, Ward won his third Challenger title at Lexington, USA. [24]

In November, the Lawn Tennis Association announced a dramatic cut in elite player funding, with all financial support being withdrawn from Britain’s doubles specialists and any singles players aged over 24, such as Ward, to reduce the number of supported players from 16 this year to just six in 2014.[25]

In December, Ward along with Ross Hutchins and Kyle Edmund, stayed with Andy Murray at his training camp in Miami.[26] [27] [28]


Ward started 2014 in Brisbane, competing in the Brisbane International, losing in the 2nd Qualifying Round to Marius Copil in three sets. Ward then went on to the Australian Open, entering into the Qualifier tournament. However, Ward disappointingly lost in the first round of qualifying to Andrea Arnaboldi. Soon after, Ward competed in the Honolulu Challenger, a common tournament for those who failed to make the Australian Open Main Draw. However, Ward once again lost disappointingly in the first round of 32, against Dennis Kudla.

In late January, Ward was called to the Great British Davis Cup squad for the World Group first round tie against the United States in San Diego, and was chosen to play the second rubber against the 49th ranked Sam Querrey. Ward was two games from defeat in the fourth set before producing a remarkable comeback to beat Querrey in five sets and increase Great Britain's lead to 2–0. Ward agreed that it was the greatest win of his career.[29] Great Britain would later go on to win the tie 3–1, with Andy Murray securing two victories; Ward was scheduled to play the final rubber against Donald Young but both teams decided not to play.

Ward entered the Open BNP Paribas Banque de Bretagne as a sixth seed. However, he lost in the first round of 32 against Maxime Authom. Moving on to the Open 13, Ward entered into the Qualifying tournament and fought his way to the third and final round. However, he lost to Ricardas Berankis, ending his progress in the tournament. He had more success in the Dubai Tennis Championships, entering as a Wild Card into the main draw. In the first round of 32, Ward beat Teymuraz Gabashvili in three sets in order to advance to the second round of 16. There, he lost to sixth seed, Mikhail Youzhny, earning nearly $25,000 in the progress. Ward also entered the Qualifying tournament at the BNP Paribas Open. At Indian Wells, Ward progressed to the second Qualifying Round, but lost to Paul-Henri Mathieu in straight sets. However, taking advantage of the withdrawal, Ward received a Wild Card into the Main Draw in place of the sixth seed Juan Martín del Potro, thus earning a Bye in the First Round of 128. Despite losing in the Round of 64 to Feliciano Lopez, Ward once again earned around $16,000.

Entering the Visit Panamá Cup as a Direct Acceptance, Ward unfortunately lost to Gastão Elias in the first round of 32. Moving on, Ward was once again called into the Great British Davis Cup Squad, in order to compete against Italy. Ward competed in two live rubbers in the tie, losing hard-fought battles against both Fabio Fognini and Andreas Seppi. Due to Fognini's win over Andy Murray, Italy won the tie 3–2.

James Ward qualified for the 2014 French Open for the first ever time thanks to victories over Moldovan Radu Albot (6–3 7–5) in Round 1, a 7–6 7–6 win over American Ryan Harrison in round 2 and a tense 4–6 6–4 12–10 victory over Slovenian Blaz Rola in the final round. By doing so, Ward became the first British player to progress through qualifying for the French Open since John Lloyd in 1973.[3] Before 2014, Ward had never won at the Parisian Grand Slam.

In December, Ward again trained with Andy Murray at his training camp in Miami for two and a half weeks.[30]


In January, Ward joined Andy Murray's training camp in Dubai.[30]

In March, Ward was selected for the Davis Cup first round tie against the United States in Glasgow, pulling off the biggest win of his career. Ward, ranked 111 in the world, came from two sets down to beat 20th-ranked John Isner 6-7 (5-7) 5-7 6-3 7-6 (7-3) 15-13 in a match which surpassed the five-hour mark, to set Great Britain on their way to victory.[29] The last time Great Britain won back-to-back Davis Cup matches against the USA, was 80 years ago.[31]

In July, Ward made it into the 3rd round of Wimbledon for the first time, where he was knocked out by Vasek Pospisil 4–6 6–3 6–2 3–6 6–8. After Wimbledon, he was ranked in the top 100 players for the first time, reaching a career-high ranking of 89.[32] He was also part of the team for the Davis Cup quarter final against France. Ward lost to Gilles Simon, the world No 11, but Great Britain won 3-1 to qualify for the Davis Cup semi-final.

Since Wimbledon, Ward suffered nine successive defeats, but was announced for the Davis Cup team in the semi-final against Australia in Glasgow. The Davis Cup captain, Leon Smith, eventually made the surpise decision to give the 300 ranked Dan Evans the second singles position along with Andy Murray. Though Dan Evans lost his rubber, Great Britain won 3-2 and reached the Davis Cup Final for the first time since 1978.

In October, Ward won his fourth Challenger title in Bangalore, defeating top seed Adrian Menendez-Maceiras 6-2, 7-5 to clinch his first title on the Challenger Tour since July 2013. [33] After a disastrous loss of form during the summer, Ward had been under threat of dropping outside the world's top 200 by the end of the year, but his success ensured a ranking of 143.[34] Ward then made it an eight match winning streak by reaching the semi finals of the Pune Challenger. This success led to Ward being made the Aegon Player of the Month for October.[35]

Career statistics[edit]

Career finals[edit]

ITF Men's Circuit[edit]

Singles: 7 (5 titles, 2 runner-ups)[edit]
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Winner 1. 21 July 2008 Spain Irun Clay Spain Pablo Martin-Adalia 7–6(7–1), 7–6(7–4)
Runner-up 1. 22 September 2008 Spain Martos Hard Spain Roberto Bautista-Agut 6–3, 3–6, 2–6
Winner 2. 20 October 2008 Spain Rodez Hard Spain Guillermo Alcaide 6–3, 6–4
Runner-up 2. 24 November 2008 United Arab Emirates Dubai Hard Sweden Filip Prpic 6–7(5–7), 1–6
Winner 3. 4 July 2010 United Kingdom Manchester Grass United Kingdom Jamie Baker 6–2, 7–6(7–5)
Winner 4. 30 August 2010 Spain Santander Clay Spain Guillermo Olaso 7–5, 6–4
Winner 5. 22 April 2012 Taiwan Kaohsiung Hard Japan Hiroki Moriya 7–5, 7–6(7–3)
Doubles: 2 (1 title, 1 runner-up)[edit]
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponent Score
Runner-up 1. 11 June 2006 Spain Tenerife Carpet Germany Tony Holzinger France Jean-François Bachelot
France Nicolas Tourte
4–6, 3–6
Winner 2. 26 January 2009 Germany Mettmann Carpet (i) United Kingdom Joshua Goodall Belarus Nikolai Fidirko
United Kingdom Neil Pauffley
4–6, 6–0, [10–4]

ATP Challenger Tour[edit]

Singles: 9 (4 titles, 5 runner-ups)[edit]
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Winner 1. 11 May 2009 United States Sarasota, United States Clay Australia Carsten Ball 6–7(4–7), 6–4, 6–3
Runner-up 1. 24 July 2011 United States Lexington, United States Hard United States Wayne Odesnik 5–7, 4–6
Winner 2. 7 August 2011 Canada Vancouver, Canada Hard United States Robby Ginepri 7–5, 6–4
Runner-up 2. 10 February 2013 Australia Adelaide, Australia Hard Australia Matthew Barton 2–6, 3–6
Runner-up 3. 5 May 2013 China Anning, China Clay Hungary Márton Fucsovics 5–7, 6–3, 3–6
Winner 3. 28 July 2013 United States Lexington, United States Hard Australia James Duckworth 4–6, 6–3, 6–4
Runner-up 4. 27 July 2014 United States Lexington, United States Hard Australia James Duckworth 3–6, 4–6
Runner-up 5. 9 November 2014 Australia Traralgon, Australia Hard Australia John Millman 4–6, 1–6
Winner 4. 25 October 2015 India Bangalore, India Hard Spain Adrián Menéndez-Maceiras 6–2, 7–5
Doubles: 3 (2 titles, 1 runner-up)[edit]
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponent Score
Winner 1. 4 August 2008 India New Delhi, India Hard United Kingdom Joshua Goodall Japan Tasuku Iwami
Japan Hiroki Kondo
6–4, 6–1
Winner 2. 3 May 2010 United States Savannah, United States Clay United Kingdom Jamie Baker United States Bobby Reynolds
South Africa Fritz Wolmarans
6–3, 6–4
Runner-up 1. 24 July 2011 United States Lexington, United States Hard United States Michael Yani Australia Jordan Kerr
United States David Martin
3–6, 4–6

Grand Slam performance timelines[edit]


Tournament 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 W–L
Australian Open A A Q1 Q2 Q1 1R Q3 Q1 1R 0–2
French Open A A A Q1 Q1 Q1 A 1R Q2 0–1
Wimbledon Q1 A 1R A 1R 2R 1R 1R 3R 3–6
US Open A A Q1 A Q1 Q1 Q3 Q3 1R 0–1
Win–Loss 0–0 0–0 0–1 0–0 0–1 1–2 0–1 0–2 2–3 3–10
Year-end Ranking 558 280 270 201 162 250 161 107


Tournament 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 W–L
Australian Open A A A A A 0–0
French Open A A A A A 0–0
Wimbledon 2R A 1R 1R A 1–3
US Open A A A A A 0–0
Win–Loss 1–1 0–0 0–1 0–1 0–0 1–3
Year-end Ranking 362 328 267 1,176 747

Davis Cup: 19 (10 wins, 9 losses)[edit]

Group membership
World Group (2–4)
Group I (1–3)
Group II (7–2)
Group III (0)
Group IV (0)
Matches by Surface
Hard (7–6)
Clay (1–2)
Grass (2–1)
Rubber outcome No. Rubber Match type (partner if any) Opponent nation Opponent player(s) Score
Decrease2–3; 5–7 March 2010; SEB Arena, Vilnius, Lithuania; Group II Europe/Africa First Round; Hard(i) surface
Victory 1. II Singles Lithuania Laurynas Grigelis 6–4, 6–2, 6–4
Defeat 2. IV Singles Lithuania Ričardas Berankis 6–7(4–7), 3–6, 4–6
Increase5–0; 9–11 July 2010; Devonshire Park, Eastbourne, Great Britain; Group II Europe/Africa Relegation Play-off; Grass surface
Victory 3. II Singles Turkey Marsel İlhan 6–2, 7–5, 6–7(0–7), 6–1
Victory 4. V (dead rubber) Singles Turkey Ergün Zorlu 6–1, 6–3
Increase4–1; 4–6 March 2011; Bolton Arena, Bolton, Great Britain; Group II Europe/Africa First Round; Hard(i) surface
Victory 5. II Singles Tunisia Sami Ghorbel 6–0, 6–2, 6–0
Victory 6. IV Singles Tunisia Malek Jaziri 3–6, 6–3, 3–6, 6–3, 8–6
Increase4–1; 8–10 July 2011; Braehead Arena, Glasgow, Great Britain; Group II Europe/Africa Quarterfinal; Hard(i) surface
Defeat 7. I Singles Luxembourg Gilles Müller 2–6, 6–7(4–7), 1–6
Victory 8. V (dead rubber) Singles Luxembourg Mike Vermeer 6–1, 6–3
Increase5–0; 16–18 September 2011; Braehead Arena, Glasgow, Great Britain; Group II Europe/Africa Semifinal; Hard(i) surface
Victory 9. I Singles Hungary Attila Balázs 6–4, 6–4, 4–6, 6–4
Increase3–2; 10–12 February 2012; Braehead Arena, Glasgow, Great Britain; Group I Europe/Africa First Round; Hard(i) surface
Defeat 10. II Singles Slovakia Martin Kližan 2–6, 6–4, 4–6, 6–7(3–7)
Defeat 11. IV Singles Slovakia Lukáš Lacko 6–7(6–8), 1–6, 3–6
Increase3–2; 10–12 February 2013; Ricoh Arena, Coventry, Great Britain; Group I Europe/Africa Quarterfinal; Hard(i) surface
Defeat 12. II Singles Russia Evgeny Donskoy 6–4, 6–4, 3–6, 5–7, 6–8
Victory 13. IV Singles Russia Dmitry Tursunov 6–4, 5–7, 5–7, 6–4, 6–4
Increase3–1; 31 January – 2 February 2014; Petco Park, San Diego, California, United States; World Group First Round; Clay surface
Victory 14. II Singles United States Sam Querrey 1–6, 7–6(7–3), 3–6, 6–4, 6–1
Decrease2–3; 4–6 April 2014; Tennis Club Napoli, Naples, Italy; World Group Quarterfinal; Clay surface
Defeat 15. I Singles Italy Fabio Fognini 4–6, 6–2, 4–6, 1–6
Defeat 16. V Singles Italy Andreas Seppi 4–6, 3–6, 4–6
Increase3–2; 6–8 March 2015; Commonwealth Arena, Glasgow, Great Britain; World Group First Round; Hard (i) surface
Victory 17. II Singles United States John Isner 6–7(5–7), 5–7, 6–3, 7–6(7–3), 15–13
Defeat 18. V (dead rubber) Singles United States Donald Young 7–5, 0–1 ret.
Increase3–1; 17–19 July 2015; Queen's Club, London, Great Britain; World Group Quarterfinal; Grass surface
Defeat 19. I Singles France Gilles Simon 6–4, 6–4, 6–1


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  19. ^ "LTA Release New Funding Breakdown". Sky News. 5 December 2012. 
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  25. ^ "Jamie Murray and Jonny Marray lose out as LTA slashes funding for Britain's elite doubles players". Telegraph. 8 November 2013. 
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  27. ^ "Andy Murray training sessions in Miami heat helped Ross Hutchins beat cancer". Irish Mirror. 15 January 2014. 
  28. ^ "Yorkshire teenager Edmund can show world what he can do if given chance – Davis Cup captain". Yorkshire Post. 22 January 2014. 
  29. ^ a b "James Ward: 'It's the greatest win of my career'". Sportsmole. 1 February 2014. 
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  31. ^ "Victories for Andy Murray and James Ward over USA in Davis Cup". Guardian. 6 March 2015. 
  32. ^ "James Ward into world's top 100 players for first time". BBCSport. 13 July 2015. 
  33. ^ "Bangalore champion". ITF Tennis. 28 July 2013. 
  34. ^ "Result: James Ward returns to form with Bangalore Challenger triumph". sportsmole. 25 October 2015. 
  35. ^ "Aegon Player of the Month: James Ward". lta. 3 November 2015. 

External links[edit]