Serving up a treat

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Pimms, strawberries and cream, and hazy summer sunshine – well perhaps not the sunshine. Does one event ever rally the fine British troops like a spot of tennis at Wimbledon? I think not. Every year, the All England affair draws in thousands who line the residential streets of SW19 in a desperate bid to watch the world’s elite battle it out on grass.

It’s become something of a tradition of mine to grace Wimbledon’s hallowed turf (well, not quite literally) and this year came my Centre Court christening. As a sporting fan I’ve been to many iconic stadia – Twickenham, Millennium, Anfield, Ascot and Old Trafford – but none quite conjures up a feeling of British aristocrat tea drinking like Wimbledon does. Strange really considering our last homegrown winner came in 1977! Ever the eternal optimists we live in hope that Murray Wimbledon crestwill one day come good and the fresh faced Laura Robson will steal Virginia Wade’s rusting crown.

Whether there’s a British player in the final or not (and God help us when there is), you can’t argue with the entertainment that was served up to 12.7 million viewers over four hours and 48 magnificent minutes as Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer displayed the ultimate in tennis playmaking. I had the honour of watching the prelude, which admittedly didn’t quite live up to the same intense drama, but, hats off, the Championships has done it again in galvanising a nation and delivering breathtaking tennis. My ballot paper will certainly be in the post come 1 August!