Wimbledon or, as its properly known, The Championships, Wimbledon, is one of the most prestigious tennis events in the world. It is one of 4 tennis tournaments that make up the famous ‘Grand Slam’ of tennis and, as such, attracts the best players from all over the globe. Of course the enormous purse that it brings is also a big incentive and the fact that it’s covered world-wide in the media adds to that allure. Indeed people from all over the planet travel to the UK every year to see Wimbledon and viewers worldwide are in the millions.
Since 1877 Wimbledon has been played at the All England lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in the town of Wimbledon, which is a district in the southern part of London, England. It is the oldest tennis tournament in the world and is the only 1 of the 4 Grand Slam tournaments that is played on natural grass instead of clay or synthetic grass.
The tournament hosts 128 individual tennis players (male and female) who play in the singles matches and there are also 64 pairs in the men’s and women’s doubles matches (single sex) and 48 couples who play in the mixed matches. Wimbledon is played over 13 days every June starting on the 1st Monday between the 20th and 26th of the month. The middle Sunday during the tournament is a day off for the players and they usually need it due to Wimbledon’s grueling schedule.
As 1 of the 4 Grand Slam events Wimbledon is similar to the Triple Crown in horse racing in that anyone who can win all 4 tournaments in the same year is truly considered the best in the world. The other 3 Grand Slam events are the United States Open, the French Open and the Australian Open but none are as old or as revered as Wimbledon. Winners of this prestigious tennis event receive either a beautiful gilt cup for the men or the huge Rosewater Dish for the women. Runners up receive silver plates and winners of the doubles and mixed doubles get silver cups.
There is limited open seating available every year and usually a mad rush ensues to get them every day of the tourney. As with most sporting events in the UK spectators are encouraged to wear relatively formal attire to show their respect. Players must wear white tennis shoes and are expected to wear no more than 5% of their clothes in a contrasting color. We’re not sure why but those are the rules and nobody seems keen on breaking them.
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