Strawberries, cream and everything in between: Wimbledon 2016 has officially begun. It’s that time of year when the smell of freshly trimmed courts fills the air and tennis fans descend on the Wimbledon grounds to support their sporting heroes. Yes it’s Wimbledon season and as the sun beams down, some 256 tennis players dream of untold glory as they make their way to the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club.
As the 2016 Wimbledon Championship marks its 130th anniversary, all eyes are on one man: Djokovic. Ever since Novak Djokovic won the men’s title at the 2015 Wimbledon tournament the Serbian player has been riding a wave of explosive power and control on the court, having clinched the US Open, the Australian Open and the French Open Grand Slam titles. This year, Djokovic’s biggest threat comes from Roger Federer, who is still recovering from a back injury, as Spaniard Rafael Nadal has pulled out of the Championship due to a wrist injury. And if second seed and recent Queen’s Club champ Andy Murray’s thrashing of the Djoker at the 2012 Wimbledon and the 2013 Olympics is anything to go by, come game day there might be more than just one upset.
Chasing Steffi Graf’s record of 22 Grand Slam titles, Serena Williams is poised to claim this year’s women’s title. But Lady Luck hasn’t been rooting for her, as she suffered a series of shock defeats since her 21st Grand Slam victory at last year’s Wimbledon. If the top seed fails to bring her best game to the court, expect last year’s runner-up Garbine Muguruza, world number three Agnieszka Radwanska and dark horse Petra Kvitova to capitalise on the opportunity.
2016 marks a first for Wimbledon as it will host its first ever wheelchair singles tournament. Not all is new though as the strict all-white dress code will continue to prevail on the court. Selfie sticks will be banned at matches, so if attendees fancy catching a quick snap with their favourite players in the background then they’d better have long arms, or a friend to do the honours for them.
No Wimbledon is complete without a star-studded audience. Prince William and Kate Middleton, keen supporters of Andy Murray are expected to grace the Royal Box at the Centre Court. Stars like Hugh Grant, Benedict Cumberbatch, Helena Bonham-Carter, Sacha Baron Cohen, David Beckham and Bradley Cooper attended the matches last year, and this year should be no different.
This year’s championship looks set to be filled with glorious victories and unmissable history-rewriting moments. As Wimbledon powers on, grab your rackets and get involved in the game with our picks of the best tennis gear to get you started on the court.
Attack quickly and precisely with the Babolat Pure Strike Tennis Racket. Designed for speed and balance, its hybrid frame and carbon fibre body improves torsional stability for accurate shots. Its Stabiliser Technology reduces torque on impact while a Response Woofer returns energy using enhanced grommets and bumper. With extra responsiveness on contact with the ball, the racket balances control and speed for impulsive attack.
Dominate every set with the Dunlop Apex Pro 265 Tennis Racket. Constructed from HM6 Carbon, this extremely sturdy frame incorporates Aeroskin technology for reduced aerodynamic drag. Blast away with its VIBROTECH system that returns balls with intense speed and power.
Inspire the next generation of tennis players with the Babolat Nadal Kids’ 25 Tennis Racket. Its aluminium build makes it light and easily maneuverable, while an enlarged head size makes finding the sweet spot easy while practicing different strokes. With a paint job similar to Rafael Nadal’s racket, beginners will aspire to his greatness with every match.
Smash your way to victory with the Dunlop Viper Dry Tennis Racket Overgrip. Inspired by the deadly desert dwelling sand viper, the grip’s textured surface gives you extended control through long sets. The perforated surface absorbs moisture to deliver an ultra-dry feel in all playing conditions.
The 2016 Wimbledon Championship looks to be a firecracker of a tournament as superstars of the game are challenged by rookie sensations. Even as hush falls on the crowd, raise your racket and dominate the court. Begin your path to a million smashes by checking out the latest tennis products over at Sun & Sand Sports, and stay updated on all the Wimbledon action by signing up for the SSS Newsletter at the bottom of this page. Game on!