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The Wimbledon Fortnight

Wimbledon is the third of four Grand Slam events, and has earned a spot in history as the most prestigious. Every tennis pro dreams of winning a Grand Slam title, and the one that most regard in the highest esteem is Wimbledon.

The All England Lawn Tennis Club has hosted the Wimbledon Championships for more than 125 years. A lot has changed over the years, but some things remain the same. It is, after all, a private club for the rich a famous, and there is a tradition to uphold. You donít play there without an invitation, the men are referred to as gentlemen, past champions garner the utmost respect, the dress code calls for primarily white tennis attire, and the ladies will curtsey to the royal box.

Most tennis fans and tour players recognize Wimbledon for itís history and tradition. The club has done well to maintain the honor and stature it was founded with long ago. Roger Federer has been a favorite over the years because he understands and respects the history, just a few things heís learned after winning so many titles. The club was slow in warming to Serena Williams until she showed that same respect.

Wimbledon is the only Grand Slam played on grass. The slick, low-bounding surface traditionally favors a serve-volley player. Baseliners have recently begun to post better results, and with everyone hitting with more pace these days, the serve-volley players are becoming extinct.

The Wimbledon fortnight begins six weeks before the first Monday in August, and play continues for two weeks, or until all events are completed. Rain often halts play at Wimbledon, often washing out days in a row, but the addition of a new retractable roof ensures that some tennis will be played. There is traditionally no play scheduled on the middle Sunday, it is a Rest Day, but on rare occasion it is necessary to catch up matches. The finals are typically televised over the 4th of July weekend to cover the womenís final on Saturday and the menís final on Sunday.

As the Wimbledon Championships play out, itís a time when most tennis fans and enthusiasts kick back, relax and watch a little more TV than usual, trying to catch their favorite player in action, or pick up a new tennis move to improve their game.

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