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Tennis Tournaments

What are tennis tournaments?

Tennis tournaments are opportunities for players to display their skills at hitting a ball with a racket over a net on a rectangular court.  Singles are between two opponents and doubles are between four. Points are awarded to a player or team whenever the opponent fails to return the ball within the lines of the court.  Lawn tennis is played on grass and originated in England in the nineteenth century. An earlier form of the game called real tennis was played by French courtiers in the thirteen century.

When did tennis tournaments begin?

The first tennis tournament  between twenty-one amateurs was held at Wimbledon  by the All England Croquet and Lawn Tennis Club in 1877. Since then the number of tournaments has grown and there are four big international ones held every year – the Wimbledon Grand Slam, Roland Garros (French Open), US Open and the Australian Open. Top players from across the world contest against each other for the championship. The Davis Cup is another major international tournament where teams from two countries compete against each other.

Visiting a tennis tournament – Wimbledon

It is surprisingly easy for the dedicated tennis fan to attend a tournament and to watch the top professionals  players playing a match. Tickets for Wimbledon are available in advance but if you are in London and want to see first class tennis being played, then join the Wimbledon queue. Take the tube to Southfields, on the District Line. Walk to Wimbledon Park. Make sure you arrive before 9am. On arrival the stewards, usually local volunteers, will give you a queue card with the date and queue number on. You can leave the queue for up thirty minutes, so take a walk around the park or grab a coffee or a bacon sandwich from the  pop up vendors.

The queue starts to move when the gates open at ten o’clock but don’t expect to gain entry to the grounds before eleven thirty. In 2022 the ground tickets cost £27, excellent value as you are guaranteed brilliant entertainment until late in the evening. Come prepared for al weathers as Wimbledon is an outdoor event – so pack suntan lotion, sunglasses, a hat but also a waterproof and umbrella if rain is forecast. Take time to chat to your fellow queuers – they come from all over the world to see their favourite tennis players.  Print off the order of play before you leave home as then you will know which matches are scheduled for which court. Once inside you are free to watch matches on all the courts except for Centre Court and Courts 1, 2 and 3.

To find out more about visiting Wimbledon visit

Jeļena Ostapenko is a Latvian professional tennis player seen here playing Yanina Wickmayer a Belgian professional tennis player on 29th June 2022 at Wimbledon.