Marcus Willis was supposed to spend Monday with 5-to-10-year-olds at Warwick Boat Club in central England, where he teaches tennis.
Instead, a string of six victories in qualifying matches earned the world's No. 772 player a spot at Wimbledon. There, the 25-year-old pulled off the unthinkable, beating World No. 54 Ricardas Berankis in straight sets.
Willis, a former top junior, has spent much of the past decade bouncing around levels below the ATP. He peaked at No. 221 in the world in August 2014, but had never played a grand slam, let alone a match at the ATP Tour-level until Monday.
Willis makes about $40 per hour at his day job. In actual competition, he made just $356 in the first half of 2016 from a January tournament in Tunisia. For his win Monday, Willis is guaranteed a $66,000 check.
"Makin' it rain," he smiled when told about his winnings after the match.
According to The New York Times, Willis is practically living the script of the film, Wimbledon. In February, Willis planned to travel to the U.S. and land coaching jobs in Philadelphia. As fate would have it, he ran into Jennifer Bate, a dentist and mother of two, who describes the night as "love at first sight."
"I was adamant I was going to go to America to coach," Willis recalls. "I had called up someone about the visa -- and then I met a girl. She basically told me I was an idiot and that I should keep going, and I’m very grateful for that."
Awesome: Brit Marcus Willis, No. 775 in the world, wins 1st round Wimbledon match. Now guaranteed $62,000. Career earnings? $95,129.
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) June 27, 2016
Four months later, Willis became the toast of England. Win or lose in the second round, Willis' profile -- he has no sponsors -- is about to grow regardless. On Wednesday, he takes on seven-time Wimbledon champion, and current World No. 3, Roger Federer. The center court match is sure to be on TV around the world, and if Willis can keep things close, the second round setting will morph into a championship environment.
Marcus Willis on whether he's ever spoken to Roger Federer. "I don't think I have. I don't think he was at Tunisia F1 this year."
— Courtney Nguyen (@FortyDeuceTwits) June 28, 2016
Oh yeah, as for Willis' students, he has to cancel his Wednesday lessons.
Follow Jeffrey Eisenband on Twitter @JeffEisenband.