For the first time since World War II, Wimbledon will not take place because of public health concerns related to the Coronavirus. The announcement was made last 1 April 2020. The 134th Championships will instead commence from 28 June to 11 July 2021.
According to the AELTC Chairman, Ian Hewitt, the suspension of the Championships was for the greater good: “… We believe that it is a measure of this global crisis that it is ultimately the right decision to cancel this year’s Championships, and instead concentrate on how we can use the breadth of Wimbledon’s resources to help those in our local communities and beyond.”
Wimbledon is considered one of the most prestigious tennis tournaments in the world. Not only is it Britain’s most awaited sporting event, but also millions of fans all over the globe keep track of it due to their love of the sport tennis.
Here are some fun facts about this famous and historic event.
- The name Wimbledon comes from its location. It is a district of Southwest London. The tournament was first held on Worple Road, but it was moved to Church Road in 1922.
- It is considered the oldest tennis tournament in the world! It was established at the All England Croquet and Lawn Tennis club (now AELTC) back in 1877.
- The most singles wins for the male is Roger Federer, who holds eight wins. On the other hand, the woman who has the most singles wins is Martina Navratilova, who holds a record of nine. The same players also keep the records for being the oldest players to win titles.
- There around 250 ball boys and girls or also known as BBGs. Their job is to keep track of the tennis balls. The average age to be a BBG is 15 years old. To be one, they must be nominated by their headteachers and also pass written and fitness tests, among others. Each of them often has to have at least 2.5 hours of weekly training sessions.
- There is a strict dress code for tennis players, and that is, they must always wear white. Otherwise, the Umpire can ask them to change clothes.
- There are four Grand Slam tennis tournaments: Wimbledon, Australian Open, French Open and the US Open. And out of all of them, Wimbledon is the only Grand Slam event that is still played on grass. The said grass is also 100% perennial ryegrass that is cut to a height of 8 mm.
- There are around 54,000 tennis balls used in the tournament. Tennis balls are changed after the first seven games and then each ninth game to keep them in the best conditions. When they aren’t used, they are put inside a refrigerated container.
- The record holder for the tennis match that was played longest for any tournament is the 2010 tournament between John Isner and Nicolas Mahut. It lasted for over three days, specifically 11 hours and five minutes. Isner defeated Mahut with the final score being: 6-4, 3-6, 6-7 (7), 7-6 (3), 70-68.
- Did you know that tennis balls weren’t always yellow? Well, they initially used white balls, but it was then replaced with yellow in 1986 so that they are more visible on television.
- Aside from being a famous tennis tournament, Wimbledon is also known for its strawberries. Every year, there are over 140,000 bowls of strawberries and cream given to the players and the audience.
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