At the end of Wimbledon, the dirty green, tufted and torn grass courts will resemble a city’s public baseball park after four months of kids sliding into base. But in the first week of Wimbledon, everything is beautiful and pristine and lush as a pastoral Irish meadow. Well, it is on the first day, anyway. Once a few matches get underway, and as the week progresses, the court gets rougher at the baseline and randomly slippery everywhere else. Have fun with that, players!
The natural result of extreme feats of physical agility, speed, and power on a field of metaphorical banana peels is that people fall down. A lot. And sometimes it’s funny. Actually, mostly it’s funny, once we find out no one was seriously hurt in the making of these abruptly amusing slips, slides, tumbles, and pratfalls.
You can see Australian Open champ Stan Wawrinka losing his footing here in his first match on the Wimbledon courts. His Portuguese opponent, Joao Sousa, complained bitterly throughout the match about the treacherous conditions. After Stanimal’s straight sets victory, umpire Carlos Bernardes asked him if he felt the courts were in bad shape. “”I don’t think it’s slippery, just a few spots,” the Swiss man replied with a smiling shrug. “I think it’s normal.”
Stan fell down four times in that match, for the record.
Croatian teen Donna Vekic found herself sunny-side up on the “normal” grass in her match with Roberta Vinci, and was a good sport about it later, RTing this observation of ours:
It was a tough day at the office for Matt Ebden, taking a tumble during his straight sets loss to another tall dude on the tour, Milos Raonic.
Serena had a few spills of her own on the fresh green grass at Wimby, but we suspect she’ll forget about these tussles with the turf a lot sooner than she will two losses against Alizé Cornet.
To us it looks like Martin Klizan was attempting to do a handstand on the baseline, but maybe that’s the only way to win against Rafael Nadal.
Rafa was practicing his limbo skills while Klizan was working on his gymnastics…or possibly the Spaniard was having a little bit of the same trouble with slippy grass that he often does in the early days of Wimby.
The World Number One also played a couple of Vintage Nadal miracle shots, bouncing and spinning his way out of a fall to complete and win a point, and as seen above, playing another successful shot from down on the green.