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Wimbledon Channel

Qualifying begins: 26 June

The Draw: 30 June

Pre-event Press Conferences: 1 & 2 July

Order of Play: 2 July

Championships begin: 3 July


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Thursday, 6 July 2017 19:12 PM BST
News from Mission Control: Day 4
Wimbledon Announcer, Allis Moss, rounds up the day from her vantage point at The Championships READ MORE

On my way in this morning, I spy a new take on ‘one man and his dog’, the pair trundling along in one of the buggies with chunky tyres used for keeping the greens in the car parks flat and smooth.

There was no time for breakfast before today’s first announcement - unless you count three cherry tomatoes and a glucose tablet washed down by apple juice.

I am, therefore, deeply impressed by the far more organised Hugh McFarlane who works in the Control Room monitoring the grounds and its environs.

Hugh prepared his salad to beat all salads last night. It’s his habitual breakfast, a routine he began when he started to notice a pot belly after giving up playing badminton two years ago. “It’s kind of like the Atkins diet without the Atkins,” he explains over the greenery. “No carbs.”

His breakfast salad consists of celery, radish, chickpeas, brussels sprouts, onions, avocado, bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, two dates, grapes, orange, sultanas mixed with a chipolata sausage, boiled egg, a Greek chicken burger, crispy grilled bacon, peanuts, walnuts and hazelnuts for protein. He only eats meat twice a week, so adds salmon or peppered mackerel for variety.

Breakfasting in the press restaurant after the welcome greeting, I try for a pale imitation of Hugh’s: scrambled egg and salad followed by a banana split smoothie.

When it’s dry - and today is a scorcher at 31C - I get the chance to wander amongst. I’m always struck by how much each and everyone contributes to making the tournament what it is, from the ice-cream vendors to the stewards, from the musicians to those pouring the Pimm’s. 

My job is definitely more GMT than G&T. Or Universal Time, or Zulu Time, as my colleagues in the forecast office variously refer to it in their readings.  

Working here, comparing it with the Wimbledons I watched on TV as a teenager, my impression is that our summers have more hot, sunny days punctuated by occasional sudden, intense downpours than before. The forecasters debate if this is so, telling me I mustn’t link my subjective observations to climate cycles or global warming. But they admit the Met Office’s official view for the long-term forecast is that British summers are getting hotter.

One love to me then!

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