Wimbledon

10 Facts You Should Know About Wimbledon

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.

  1. 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.
  2. 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. 
  3. 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. 
  4. 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. 
  5. 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.
  6. 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.
  7. 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.
  8. 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.
  9. 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.
  10. 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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tennis court game

Top 4 Tennis Techniques Every Pro Player Knows

Learning tennis techniques requires a lot of dedication and consistent practice. It is a process that every tennis player has to undergo in order to become a professional athlete. With proper training and refinement, one will be able to develop and fully grow expertise when it comes to playing the sport.

Here are some of the key tennis techniques that you should look forward to mastering to step up your game.

Unit Turn

One of the most essential aspects of tennis techniques is the unit turn. This method involves turning one’s body and racket at the same time, getting both into a perfect swinging position.

Furthermore, there are two common mistakes a player does when performing a unit turn.

1. Stepping Back

2. Turning and Tilting The Head

Executing the unit turn may seem very easy at first glance but a lot of tennis players tend to misinterpret and do it the wrong way.

Swing Shape

Take note that there are no straight lines in tennis. This is why the swing shape is an extremely important technique that you need to learn and work on. The swing shape simply describes how you position the racket and your arm while in the process of a takeback.

Moreover, this practice is not that easy to pull off. A lot of players commit the mistake of doing excess motions through the course of the takeback. As a result, they generate less power and spin.

It is highly important to incorporate the perfect swing shape into these basic tennis strokes:

  • Serve
  • Forehand Groundstroke
  • Backhand Groundstroke
  • Forehand Volley
  • Backhand Volley
  • Overhead Smash

Tennis Grips

In professional tennis, your grip affects the way you hit the ball. It also impacts the pace, distance, spin, and the spot where you want the ball to make contact. When performing various strokes, professional tennis players adjust their grip to achieve a perfect shot.

Honing your grip techniques into perfection can greatly help you make the most out of your matches. Here are some of the tennis grips you might want to become familiar with.

  • Continental Grip
  • Eastern Forehand Grip
  • Semi-Western Forehand Grip
  • Western Forehand Grip
  • Eastern Forehand Grip
  • Semi-Western Backhand Grip
  • Western Backhand Grip
  • Eastern Backhand Grip
  • Two-Handed Backhand Grip

Learning tennis grips can be a daunting process, especially if you’re new to the game. However, once you learn the basic stuff, you will be able to learn the rest more easily.

Serve

While serving the ball may be an extremely basic practice in tennis, this technique requires more than just hitting the ball to the other side. Learning how to properly serve the ball can provide you with a huge game advantage.

There are four main types of tennis serves that you need to learn.

  • Flat Serve
  • Slice Serve
  • Kick Serve
  • Underhanded Serve

Moreover, professional tennis players don’t limit themselves with only one type of serve. As a matter of fact, there are appropriate serves that you can use in every situation. Knowing when to utilize a particular tennis serve will enable you to maximize your strategy more.

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surprising retirement in tennis martina hingis

5 of the Most Shocking Retirements in Tennis

Maria Sharapova recently announces her retirement from tennis. And she made it clear: she’s retiring, not quitting.

Tennis fans and even sceptics quite expect this retirement announcement.

These five names, however, took the tennis world by surprise with their shocking – almost controversial – way of announcing retirement and the reasons behind them.

#5 – Steffi Graf

No one suspected that she would be announcing her retirement in August 1999. She was still in her career prime. She was only 30 years old and ranked No. 3 then. 

 Thus, Graf’s tennis journey is a story of what could have been if she chose to continue playing. She left the game as the greatest women’s player during her time.

A perfectionist she was on the court, Graf explained that she has already accomplished everything in tennis. While she was battling injuries, then, the tennis player also said that she was “no longer having fun.”

A young, vibrant Martina Hingis was also on the rise, doing everything she can to overcome challenges along the way, including Graf. And, the stabbing incident between her fan and Monica Seles also contributed to her sentiment.

#4 – Marion Bartoli

Bartoli was also progressing mightily when suddenly announced her retirement following a Wimbledon win in 2013. She reached a career-high at No. 7.

For her, her body was no longer cooperating with injuries that made continuing difficult. Bartoli said, “I really felt I gave all the energy I have left in my body, …but now my body just can’t cope with everything.”

Bartoli was 28 when she retired.

#3 – Martina Hingis

Hingis was a force to reckon with in women’s tennis but still chose to retire at only 22 years old. 

She struggled with injuries. Although in a BBC report, Hingis mentioned that she could not be “content with less” after being four years at No. 1 ranking. 

Hingis was suffering from ankle injuries. Part of her retirement was, nevertheless, because of the rise of equally competitive tennis players.

She had a comeback in 2006 but retired the next year again after testing positive for cocaine. She faced a two-year ban, though, Hingis maintained she was innocent.

#2 – Justine Henin

Henin retired from playing tennis when she was still ranked No. 1 in May 2008. She was only 25 years old. She even requested her name’s removal from the ranking immediately.

She said that she felt no sadness in leaving tennis behind, believing that she already gave her all for twenty years. She focused on her tennis school and charity works.

Like Hingis, she staged a comeback in 2010 but failed to recapture her fame and glory before her first retirement.

#1 – Bjorn Borg

Borg is the tennis superstar that fans never wanted to see retiring, but he did. The years 1982 to 1984 were chaotic. He announced his retirement in January 1983 at only 26 years old. Even John McEnroe persuaded him to continue playing but was unsuccessful.

He was known for his magnificent tennis playing style as well as his commercial appeal—such a waste of talent for undeniably the greatest player in tennis history.

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