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With Wimbledon just around the corner, a new poll reveals that the Wimbledon fortnight is the UK’s favourite sporting event or activity.

As part of The National Lottery’s Love UK campaign, UK residents were asked to select their best-loved sporting events or activities.

And 35% chose Wimbledon against 33% who named club football.

TV presenter and former British No.1 Andrew Castle said: “Tennis has received nearly £170 million of Lottery funding, and with Wimbledon just round the corner I’m delighted that the tournament has been named as the nation’s favourite sporting event.”

Since the Lottery began, tennis has received almost £170 million towards improving tennis-playing facilities in the community, including court renovations, new indoor tennis centres and supporting coaching at junior and adult level.

UK’s top five sporting events:

1. Wimbledon fortnight
2. Club football
3. Six Nations rugby
4. Medal-winning athletes
5. The Boat Race

(source: Lawn Tennis Association)

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 The re-development of the center court in Wimbledon is planned for the 2009 championship. This plan includes more comfortable seats, a larger capacity, better facilities and a retractable roof to allow play to continue whatever the weather.

Unfortunately, the old roof had to be removed as part of the construction work. This means that, for the first time in Centre Court’s 85-year history, spectators won’t have any cover from rain or sun, so if you are planning to visit Wimbledon this year come fully prepared.

Surely, the focus of the re-development plan is the roof on the Center Court. The new fixed roof, but without the retractable cover, will be ready in time for the 2008 Championships. The retractable roof is set to be completed for the 2009 Championships.

(source: Wimbledon.com)

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Andy Roddick moved on to London to begin preparation on the the grass courts of England. Andy’s ankle is getting better, and he should be ready to get a solid week of grass court practice in before the start of Queen’s. He will rely on his serve and big forehand to win points early. The ball is going to move through the court quickly, so Andy will have to go for his shots and use his net game more. He will have to look for every opportunity to finish the point.

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Andy Murray is almost certain to miss Wimbledon due to the wrist injury he suffered before The French Open.

British No 1 Murray has completed just one match in the past two months because of the injury and a series of other problems.He was forced to pull out of the French Open in Paris and has had to rest at the height of the summer season.

Wrist injuries are not easy to heal, and the players who can testify to that statement are Xavier Malisse and Nicolas Kiefer.

Murray is believed to have dedicated himself to conditioning training but he has not been able to hit balls, leaving him short of practice.

But, Andy will certainly be ready to play the tournaments after Wimbledon which are the ones on hard court in United States. His goal is to get in the first eight, and at the end of the year play the finale in Shanghai.

(source: daily mail)

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Roger Federer wants a roof over his head at the French Open, and his wish might come true by 2011. Heavy rain at Roland Garros allowed only 14 matches to be completed over the first two days, forcing 82 matches to be crammed into Tuesday’s schedule. The top-ranked Federer thinks a court with a retractable roof would have prevented that backlog.
Three-time French Open champion Justine Henin, No. 4 Jelena Jankovic and 2003 champion Juan Carlos Ferrero were among players annoyed by the rain delays.

(source: sportsillustrated)

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The ATP tour has announced major changes for 2009, including cutting the number of ATP Masters Series Tournaments from 9 to eight, and moving the end-of-year championships from Asia to Europe. They are currently exploring plans to eliminate Monte Carlo as a Masters Series event in 2009 and reduce the prize money there from $2.1 million to about $500,000.They’re also planning to downgrade another Masters event in Hamburg. It was also announced that Shanghai will host one of the new masters series tournaments

ATP tournaments in 2009 will be ranked in four levels of importance: the four Grand Slam events, Masters Series 1000, Masters Series 500/Open 500, ATP 250 . Fans will not see the top players in the fourth category. Details not yet known.

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