From SPORTING INTERESTS Wimbledon
03 July - 16 July Wimbledon, London. This erstwhile garden-party tournament, which began in 1877, has grown to become one of the world's favourite sporting events.

The world's oldest major tennis championship, fought out for two weeks between late June and early July at south London's All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, is the third Grand Slam tournament of the year and the only one still played on grass.

The most important matches are played on the main Centre Court. It hosts the semi-finals and finals of the main events (gentlemen's singles, ladies' singles, gentlemen's doubles, ladies' doubles and mixed doubles), plus many earlier round matches featuring top-seeded players.

In 2009 Wimbledon unveiled a revamped Centre Court, with a new retractable roof over the court (thus avoiding rain delays). The roof, which is translucent and allows natural light to reach the grass, takes at least 10 minutes to close. Ironically, the weather in 2009 was near-perfect and the roof was only used once, in a thrilling five-set match between Andy Murray and Stanislas Wawrinka. To the disappointment of British fans, Andy Murray was knocked out in the semi-finals by the American, Andy Roddick.

However 2013 Andy Murray became the first man from Great Britain to win the singles title since Fred Perry in 1936. Marion Bartoli won the women's singles title. Bob and Mike Bryan completed the "Bryan Slam" and became the first team to hold all four Grand Slams and the Olympic Gold at the same time.

Most tickets for these courts are sold in advance via a public ballot, entry for which closes in December. However, Wimbledon is the only major Grand Slam where fans can queue for tickets for the same day's matches on Centre Court, No. 1 Court and No. 2 Court (overnight queuing is generally required to guarantee a ticket).

There are six designated car parks, plus a park and ride shuttle-bus service from the A3.


www.wimbledon.org
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