Wimbledon Championships Set to Break Away From Age-Old Tradition, New Rules in Offing

Published 04/27/2021, 11:33 AM EDT
WIMBLEDON, ENGLAND: Roger Federer of Switzerland celebrates victory with the trophy after the men’s singles final match against Andy Roddick of USA on Day Thirteen of the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London, England. Federer won 5-7, 7-6, 7-6, 3-6, 16-14. (Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)


The Wimbledon Championships this year will see a marked departure from tradition, with many rule changes in the offing in the new normal.

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One of the changes being mulled, though from the 2022 edition, will be to host matches on the middle Sunday, as opposed to the traditional single-day break, making it a full 14-day tournament.

Other sketchy details that are filtering out of the Wimbledon Spring press conference, which is currently underway, is that the organizers hope that the spectator-strength at matches will be kept at a minimum of 25%, or hopefully higher, this year.

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It’s also understood that a decision on ticketing will be left as late as possible.

As to whether the prize would remain the same as 2019 (the Wimbledon was cancelled last year owing to concerns around the novel coronavirus pandemic) or be reduced as was the case at this year’s Australian Open and other marquee events that followed, will be known in June.

The single-day break on middle Sunday at Wimbledon will be done away with from 2022

Wimbledon chairman Ian Hewitt has said that in line with the proposal to do away with the middle Sunday break from 2022, the organizers might decide to split matches in the first four rounds over two days – Sunday and Monday.

In an interesting piece of information that has come out of the ongoing press conference, the total insurance payout owing to the cancellation of the Grand Slam last year was a whopping 180 million pounds.

LONDON, ENGLAND – JULY 14: Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates winning the Men’s Singles final against Roger Federer of Switzerland during Day thirteen of The Championships – Wimbledon 2019 at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 14, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

Of this, a surplus payout of 36 million pounds owing to the shelving of the event went to the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA).

No private accommodation for players at Wimbledon

Also, Sally Bolton, Wimbledon CEO, has let it be known that it is “just not possible this year” to arrange private housing facilities for the participating players, meaning they have to stay in the tournament bubble.

This might force many players, especially eight-time champion Roger Federer, to do a rethink whether to bring their loved ones to the tournament.

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Also, the organizers are set to cap the entourage per player to three members this year, Bolton informed.

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Federer has made Wimbledon one of his priority events this year but has to battle past a strong field, featuring defending champion Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Dominic Thiem and many more, to get his hands on a ninth career title.

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Priyabrata Chowdhury

845 articles

Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing.

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