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KEY DATES FOR WIMBLEDON 2017

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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News
Saturday, 15 July 2017 12:45 PM BST
Wimbledon around the world
Federer is likened to Chopin, Mozart and van Gogh. Also men in skirts and no sock shock. READ MORE

A spotless Roger Federer, a man in a skirt playing tennis and a sockless former Formula One driver are the focus of the world’s media.

“Roger Federer, fresh and spotless at 35, advances to play his eighth Wimbledon title” gushed The Washington Post. “He departed last year’s Wimbledon in a bale of bafflement and a fog of uncertainty,” the paper said. “Twelve months later, Roger Federer, that famous combination of Chopin and Godzilla, is pretty much astounded.”

“Federer is now the poster boy for good sense and making excellent choices,” The Irish Times said. “Six months out chilling, back for an Australian Open title, no clay court season to preserve his body and he bounces into the Wimbledon final.”

Good thing former Formula One driver Nico Rosberg decided to chat to the Wimbledon Channel before taking up his invitation in the royal box.

It was pointed out to him he’d forgotten to put on a pair of socks.

“No way, I made such an effort to be dressed adequately,” he said. “I cannot believe that. I messed it up.” Rosberg rushed off to the shops to snap up a pair of socks and was later spotted having a great time on Centre Court.

If you’re even going to watch former world No. 1 Kim Clijsters play a match, be careful what you wish for. Preparing to serve in her invitational women’s doubles match, the Belgian asked the crowd in which direction she should hit the shot. 

“A body shot” came a male voice from the crowd. Clijsters duly invited him on to the court, put him in a white tennis skirt and made him play a point, Metro reported.

"That’s a man. In a skirt. Trying to return Kim Clijsters' serve. It’s 2017, people,” Bleacher Report said. “That’s one way to summarise what went down at Wimbledon on Friday.”

Only a Beatles reunion on Wimbledon Common (which, admittedly, would require two resurrections) could match the fervour for Federer at this year's event

- CNN

Being a global superstar, Federer doesn’t play anywhere without attracting an army of devoted fans. But his followers at this year’s Wimbledon are something else, according to CNN.

“Only a Beatles reunion on Wimbledon Common (which, admittedly, would require two resurrections) could match the fervour for Federer at this year's event,” CNN.com said, adding fans had travelled from places as far away as India and Shanghai.

“Is this devotion rational? For many, this is the sporting equivalent of watching Vincent van Gogh paint in broad strokes or listening to Mozart perform his concertos.”

All this adulation for the G.O.A.T. (that’s the Greatest Of All Time in social media speak) proved a little bit too much for his semi-final opponent, Tomas Berdych. 

The Czech bristled when he was asked to compare the Federer of 2017 to the Federer he beat at Wimbledon in 2010. “I don't like these kind of questions,” Berdych said. “Sorry, guys. There is no way to prove this, if we can measure it, if he's better or not. He's playing just too good."

But let’s not gloss over Federer’s next opponent, 2014 US Open winner Marin Cilic. Although he has only beaten Federer once, he nearly got the better of him at Wimbledon last year, when the Swiss was forced to come back from two sets to love down and had to save three match points.

“I hope Cilic isn’t like Stan [Wawrinka], who cannot be stopped once he is in a rhythm,” Swiss newspaper Blick quoted Federer as saying.

Switzerland is a small country with only 8 million people. Yet, they have not one, but two players playing for the Wimbledon title this weekend.

“The tennis world will be looking at Roger Federer when he goes for the trophy on the second Sunday of Wimbledon,” the website for Swiss broadcaster SRF said. “But he is not the only Swiss who can secure a title on the holy grass. Martina Hingis will be playing in the mixed doubles final with Jamie Murray.”

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