Watching a game of tennis can be one of the most exhilarating sporting experiences. The pace, skill and sheer determination of players at the peak of their powers is thrilling enough on television, but just imagine if you were there in person.
You can hear every grunt, sigh, scream and even arguments with the officials in the cases of some of the athletes. We’ll now break down the best venues to watch a tennis match – if you’re a lover of the sport or just someone with a passing interest.
The All England Club should be at the top of your list when even thinking about attending a tennis match. Steeped in history, Centre Court is the home of the sport and has witnessed all-time great matches. Located in London, it’s so easy to get around the city in normal circumstances. You can stay anywhere in the city and use the Underground to get yourself to the venue. Tickets can be expensive for the premium matches later in the competition. However, you don’t even have to get a seat on Centre Court to watch history happening in front of your eyes as John Isner and Nicolas Mahut showed when they played out a contest that lasted 11 hours and 5 minutes over three days on Court 18.
There’s still time to watch the king of Wimbledon, Roger Federer, in action. Watching the Swiss on Centre Court before he retires is certainly a bucket list idea. No player has dominated the All England Club more than Federer and his eight crowns, and the 39-year-old is backed in the tennis betting odds at 9/1 to make it nine in 2021. Seeing him at work in a seat with glorious sunshine, while devouring strawberries and cream, sounds a pretty good way to spend an afternoon.
Located in Paris, Roland-Garros also has a rich history, after being founded in 1891. It has been a staple of the tennis calendar every year since then, other than the six years of the Second World War when the country was occupied. The French Open is different to other competitions, being played on clay rather than grass or the hard court surfaces utilised in the US and Australian Opens. If watching Federer at Wimbledon is a bucket list idea, then seeing Rafa Nadal at Roland-Garros should be second on the agenda. The Spaniard has won the event 12 times – twelve!
There’s still ample time for the 34-year-old to add further crowns to his collection, as not even Novak Djokovic or Federer have been able to end his imperious hold. The weather in France is perfect in June when the competition is held and it’s more than a convenient location to commute from a hotel in Paris. Transport links are excellent with regular Métros and buses available, which are cheap and will have you at the venue within 30 minutes. Roland-Garros does not quite hold the prestige of Wimbledon, but still holds a special place in the tennis calendar and the opportunity to visit France in the height of summer should not be passed up.
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