June 27th 2004: People's sunday at Wimbledon... - TennisForum.com
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 11:20 AM Thread Starter
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Smile June 27th 2004: People's sunday at Wimbledon...

As I promised to some of you, here is the diary I wrote when I went to people's day on sunday!!! Here are the first three paragraphs...

Getting up…
It all started on Saturday June 26th, another rainy day in the UK and at Wimbledon, making any match of tennis impossible to be played. At about 5pm, after a bit of thinking and a lot of hesitating I decided that I was going to get up early, travel to London and queue up to get tickets for Wimbledon. So I went to the lab in a hurry to print my e-ticket for the coach trip as I worked out was the best in terms of timetable (and the cheapest). So I was ready to go to bed at 9:30pm, setting up my alarm clock at 3:30am to catch the 4:30am coach !!! I hardly had any sleep as I was back up at midnight and didn’t sleep much until 3:30am. When the alarm clock went off I really struggled to get up and was nearly about to go back to bed, have a few more hours of sleep and spend my day in front of the TV watching tennis. But somehow I pushed myself a bit, got ready, took a cab and got on the coach for a 2 and a half hours journey. I slept until we got to London and still half asleep I took the tube to southfields station. There was less people than I expected on the tube and much less than they were on Tuesday when I went with Vicky. I started walking towards the end of the queue, the weather was really nice and sunny, I was hoping it would last most of the day. I must admit I had no idea of how many people were gonna be there and if I was going to have the choice of the court I wanted.

In the queue…
It was around 7:50am when I reached the queue. As it was really nice I did like most people there, I sat down on the grass, started talking to people around me as the very sociable person that I am would. Most of them were from the US. They were these two couples who were from Atlanta and had spent the last three days hoping to see some good tennis at SW19. They had a package holiday which included tickets for centre court and court one. But they decided to experience the queuing adventure… Each of us was given a queue card, giving us our positions in the queue and it appeared that we had around 8,000 people in front of us. Knowing that they were selling 11,000 tickets for centre court and nearly as much for court one, we had all the chances to get the ticket for the court we wanted. Jennifer Capriati who was playing Nathalie Dechy from France, Andy Roddick and Amélie Mauresmo were scheduled on court one. Tim Henman who I saw on Tuesday was on centre court and I was not bothered about seing him. So I was gonna go for court one without the shadow of a doubt. I was really glad at that point that I came all the way from Leicester. And I started thinking of everyone. I missed Vicky first of all, who had been my tennis mania partner and who I had a great day with on Tuesday. I thought about Fiona who couldn’t come because she lives too far away. And finally I thought about all my fellow CCLers Kattie, Keira, Sarah, Mandy etc. who give me so much everyday that goes and who I so would have wanted to be there with me. So that was it ! I was going to enjoy my day just for all of them !

Getting to court one…
So after around two hours of waiting the queue started moving. I was really impressed with the organisation of the queuing system and all the security measures. Everything was very well organised and it made our waiting much easier… well at least much nicer than last year’s queueing in the rain and getting soaked before even getting to the gate ! As soon as the queue started moving, I just had time to get an ice cream (it was a bit early for an ice cream but not that much considering I had breakfast just before 4 am) and in about 30 minutes we were at the gate. We had our bags searched in details. My french flag was « nearly » confiscated by a frustrated england football fan. They also tried to tease me as one of the security people was greek and France had lost to Greece in the Euro 2004 quarter final (Football / Soccer) two days before but it didn’t work. I just said: « congratulations to the greeks, Football is over now and can I go and watch some tennis please ?». With a big smile on my face, I got my ticket for court one. I went to the court who was straight in front of me. As they were no numbered seats, I could sit wherever I could, and what a seat ! I was hoping to go on a lower level than the one I was on Tuesday. But I could see that the court was virtually empty. The stewards just made me go and sit right at the front, in the 3rd row. That is where the VIP or the player’s family usually sit. Jennifer Capriati was playing and when I got in they just had played about 2-3 games. I had her about 30 metres from me, it was amazing... I sat next to a couple from Ohio in America who were really nice. As soon as I was sat, I started getting tears in my eyes as I realised that going to Wimbledon that day was the best idea I ever had (the tireness not helping either). But I decided I was going to stay there at least for all the singles matches.

Feminism is the radical idea that women are people!
L'hymne des femmes

Last edited by yasmine; Jun 30th, 2004 at 04:58 PM. Reason: change the title thread
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 11:22 AM Thread Starter
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Here is the other half it...

The tennis matches (that’s why I was there for !)…
Jennifer Capriati won in straight sets against Nathalie Dechy by playing great tennis. I still cheered for the frenchie and raised my voice a few times. I noticed that Guy Forget who is the french davis cup and fed cup captain was there. He also won the Davis Cup for France (against Australia I think) under the lead of our Yannick Noah. And he was there sat watching Nathalie just a few metres away from me…
The court started to fill up as Andy Roddick was coming up next. I could recognise Brad Gilbert in the seats and the stadium was about two thirds full by the time the match started. Obviously I heard and saw Roddick fast serves but god it was impressive to watch live. He was playing Taylor Dent, another american. He was obviously the underdog and got quite a lot of cheering throughout the match. I left the court at the end of the first set to go and get a piece of pizza and a coke (well i was surrounded by americans so i sort of stayed in the mood…). At the place where they were selling postcards, the sellers were shouting « Have you got a tiger in your pocket ?, if not here is one ! » in reference to tiger tim Henman, trying to sell their posters of him. They only had a few postcards of the recent champions (R. Federer and our kimmie’s L. Hewitt), some of the doubles champions but none others !!! Beside the fact that they didn’t have Kim and Ai, there was none of old famous champions such as B. Becker or A. Agassi ! Were they not famous enough ? Bloody Henmania… Anyway, I came back and sat at the same place where the couple from Ohio had kept my seat for me. Although Roddick won in straight sets, the second and the third sets went to a tie break, it was very exciting. I really enjoyed watching it, as I like players who actually show some personality and emotion on court (why do you think I like Lleyton so much), it just make them more human, which they are but it’s not always easy to realise when watching on TV. And Roddick does express himself and Taylor Dent also did a bit. There was that funny moment where Dent dived to catch a volley from Roddick and stayed stuck lying on the floor. Roddick asked him if he was ok, and he replied « of course not, I lost the point ! ». Everyone laughed…
So Amelie came on next. The court was a bit more empty but there were still a few people there. I got my flag out and cheered for her all along obviously. She was the main reason why I wanted to go to court one. The first set was a bit of a wash out ! she won it 6-1 and a lot of people left after that. But I stuck in there, the second set was a bit closer but she won it 6-4. I was the only crazy person to shake a french flag there but hey i really didn’t care ! And people around me didn’t seem offended (the old french-english rivalry…) and said that I should definitely go for it ! After her match I looked at the schedule and I decided I was going to watch some doubles, particularly the one where X. Malisse and O. Rochus were playing.

Allez les Belges…
So I went to court 17 to watch the doubles game. It was already 5-5 in the first set. I sat down next to a group of belgians who had flags and hats with the belgian flag colours. The sunshine was still there so again I was going to enjoy that one especially for all the belgian sweeties I got so close to in the past few weeks. The first set went to a tie break that Xavier and Oli won. I was obviously cheering with the group next to me, especially when they were shouting in french. I was sat next to a flemish family who had got the Eurostar early in the morning to come to Wimbledon. They were lovely and the mum was nice enough to translate the cheering phrases from flemish to english. I didn’t fell confident enough to try and learn them though (I am staying truthful to my designated flemish teachers on CCL). We were quite noisy and the supporters of the pair they were playing were sat at the other side of the court. They really did not like us. They tried to cheer for the american pair but sounded ridiculous next to us. I have always thought that doubles matches were so much fun to watch as there is a bit more of a show and that one was no exception. Xavier and Oli had noticed us (they did not have much choice unless they were deaf). Their chairs were on the same side of the umpire than us and they were looking and smiling at us every time they got up ! The third set was 5-5 and the damn rain we had avoided all day started falling.

The journey back…
I waited a bit as it did not look as if it was going to last very long but it started to rain much harder and I went by the wimbledon shop to avoid getting soaked. It really seems that getting wet is something that follows me everytime I go to Wimbly (3 times I went, 3 times it rained). I waited there for a bit longer and at around 6:30pm, I started making my way back to Victoria. I had been watching tennis from 11 am to 6pm and I thought that I had a fabulous day and I could go back home without any regrets. In the bus back to the tube station (it was absolutely pouring down, no way I was going to walk even for 10 minutes !) I met Nate, who was one of the americans in the queue. He had been in court one as well but in the other side and got autographs. I thought I was dedicated to get up at 3:30am and travel just over 100 miles but it was nothing compared to his journey ! He is from Michigan (US) but is studying in Germany at the moment. He got on a plane from Cologne on Saturday morning, stayed overnight in London, queued up stayed the day at Wimbledon on sunday and was on his way to Heathrow airport to fly back to Germany !!! Anyway, we exchanged e mails and we planned to send each other our photos.
It was my farewell to Wimbledon 2004 ! I got the tube to Victoria tube station, walked to the coach station and stopped for a very light shopping on the way. I bought a little notepad to write this diary as I wanted to start writing it up when I still had all these feelings and memories so fresh in my mind. I tried to take an earlier coach than the one I had my reservation for but it was full. So it was about 7:30pm and I had an hour and a half to wait and that gave me plenty of time to write the diary. Not surprisingly I slept all the way back… I got home at about 11:45pm, my housemate Eulyn was still up and I quickly said to her that I had a great day and that the only thing I wanted at that point was my bed ! I went to sleep just after midnight and got up the next morning to go to work. I must confess I found it a bit hard thinking I was at Wimbledon just the day before. I talked about it at work as a few people like tennis and some of them got tickets through the ballot. They were all so happy for me. No doubt all the travel and tiredness had been well worth it ! On Monday, I put some of my pictures on WTA world forum in various fan forums, and they were really appreciated so I’m glad I could share them. I went to bed at 9:30 ready for a well deserved rest ! I was glad that Lleyton was through to the quarter finals, glad we finally got some pictures of Kim and I hope he will get to the semis beating Roger Federer on Wednesday.

Feminism is the radical idea that women are people!
L'hymne des femmes

Last edited by yasmine; Jul 2nd, 2004 at 07:37 PM.
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 11:26 AM Thread Starter
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And the finishing lines...

For a wonderful day at Wimbledon with all my love to all the Lleykis… Ten days at Wimbly will never equal a seat at the love game but that day was my treat and I will always remember it for as long as I live !
Thanks to Fiona for really encouraging me to go, thanks to the rain for allowing some play on Sunday and thanks to tennis for giving me so much fun. Oh and thanks to the sun for burning my poor skin although I was putting some sunscreen on every half an hour !!!

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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 11:42 AM
 
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OMG Yasmine!!! It sounds like you had a fabulous time. Im sooo jealous. I swear one day Im going to make to effort to go to London just so i can go to Wimbledon. Ive only ever seen the tennis live once when I went to the hopman cup. It was 99, the year the aussies one and I got to see Hingis play Davenport when they were 1 and 2 in the world. But i do planto go to the davis cup this year with my mum. She loves the tennis aswell
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 12:37 PM
 
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Yasmine That was a fantastic report and thanks sooo much for telling all of us about it! You wrote a lot there ay, very detailed and descriptive! I'm really glad you enjoyed your experience @ Wimbly so much. It is really a great tournament and it'll be even cooler if it ends with Lleyton grabbing the title this year, yeah?!
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 12:49 PM
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Wow, great report thanks Yasmine. Sounds like you had a great time, I'm really envious you got to go on Peoples' Sunday!!

BTW: You were much better disciplined than me when I was there - I had two large Pimms and a beer!!

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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 12:56 PM
 
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Thank you soo much Yasmine!!! It's agreat report Your description is sooo full of details that I feel like I was there Thank you
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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 01:02 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kim4eva
Yasmine That was a fantastic report and thanks sooo much for telling all of us about it! You wrote a lot there ay, very detailed and descriptive! I'm really glad you enjoyed your experience @ Wimbly so much. It is really a great tournament and it'll be even cooler if it ends with Lleyton grabbing the title this year, yeah?!
Oh yes Keira!!!! i hope so too.
Just to show you how close I was from the front, here is a pict taken by people sat next to me with one of the security guards (he was there I didn't dare telling him to bugger off!).

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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 01:10 PM
 
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you must have had a very cool day out there, you've told me allready a lot of it ... but now i'm reading this ... " i wanna go there too ! "

Thank you Yasmine, you've done a Great job !
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 01:11 PM
 
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LOL at the security guard !!!!
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 01:20 PM
 
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Thats a funny pic. Even security guards can have fun at wimby
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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 01:57 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazzzy_grrl
Thats a funny pic. Even security guards can have fun at wimby
Well they can... They stood by the front rows all throught the matches to place people and make sure people were coming in and out only at changes of ends, so they have a fab position are are close to the players all the time...

And by the way quite a few of you said they wanted a detailed report about that day so you got it!!!

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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 02:37 PM
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And of course they are not really "security guards" at all! They perform a stewarding function on the courts at Wimbledon, but they are in fact all members of the armed forces (army, navy, RAF, etc) and they are a mixture of British, Aussie, NZ, etc. They were all great when I was there and, like we said at the time, a much better posting than Iraq!!

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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 03:02 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fifiricci
And of course they are not really "security guards" at all! They perform a stewarding function on the courts at Wimbledon, but they are in fact all members of the armed forces (army, navy, RAF, etc) and they are a mixture of British, Aussie, NZ, etc. They were all great when I was there and, like we said at the time, a much better posting than Iraq!!
Very good explanation Fiona!!!

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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2004, 03:10 PM
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Yasmine, from your report and pics I think you had a "LOVELY" day at Wimbly, so maybe you should change the thread title, which sounds a little miserable!!

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