Greg Rusedski's first decade of service to British tennis is almost complete and there would be no sweeter way of nudging towards the ten-year anniversary than with victory over Tim Henman in Hamburg today.
It was on May 22 1995 that Rusedski, whose mother was born in Dewsbury, received license from the International Tennis Federation to play for the country of his mother's birth.
There were plenty of dissenters but Montreal-born Rusedski was a top-50 player and therefore an asset for the Davis Cup team, not to mention one who might get the flag flying for the home nations at Wimbledon.
To be precise, his ranking was 47th, and ten years later he stands 45th but has been as high as fourth and reached a US Open final in the intervening years.
At the time, Henman stood 272nd in the world but he is now No 9 in the world and, crucially perhaps, the boy who grew up to be a six-time grand slam semi-finalist is feeling at home on the clay these days.
Rusedski will have his work cut out at the Masters Series event in northern Germany today when Britain's top two collide in the second round.
Tracksuited to protect against the wind and cold, Rusedski eked out a 7-6, 3-6, 6-3 win over German wildcard Philipp Petzschner in his first-round contest on Monday.
Hours later Henman made swift work of bypassing another of the German players invited along at the tournament director's discretion, breezing to a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Lars Burgsmuller.
Though neither player is likely to contest Sunday's final, both Henman and Rusedski are eager for match practice on clay before the approaching French Open.
That factor suggests their match will be fiercely contested, as does the statistic which shows Rusedski having lost his last five matches against Henman, most recently this February.
The career head-to-head favours Henman 6-2 but the fifth seed this week will know he was fortunate to prevail on the hard courts of Dubai barely two months ago.
Looking towards avenging that defeat, Rusedski said after beating Petzschner: "I had two match points last time and should have won. It should be a great match."
There is an assurance to Henman's play on clay which has emerged in the past year, no doubt the result of his surprise run through to the semi-finals at Roland Garros last year.
Although the prize-money is not to be sniffed at, for Henman this week it is about tuning up for the return to Paris.
He revealed this week that although American coach Paul Annacone has not been travelling with him in Europe of late, the pair will resume their part-time working relationship in time for the year's second grand slam.
Henman said: "Paul is back home at the moment and he's planning to join me in Paris next week so we can get some good practice in before the French Open starts and then we'll work together throughout the summer."
Victory would be a boon to Henman at this stage of the season while for Rusedski a worrying trend would continue should he go out.
The 31-year-old has not advanced beyond the second round at any tournament this season, form which is threatening his world ranking status before the grass-court events.
He dearly wishes to be among the 32 seeds at Wimbledon but it would take some positive results between now and mid-June for that to become reality.
Henman sees a fiery battle ahead but one that his game is made for winning.
He said: "We both know it's difficult to get to the net when it's this slow and the balls are so cold but I'd like to think I can function from the baseline when the conditions demand these days.
"However, I've seen Greg come up with some great performances when he's not been expected to do well on clay in Davis Cup. I recall the way he played against Jurgen Melzer in Austria last year so I have got to be ready for another tight match."