Blow Dryers were the hero of the hour on Centre Court as the turf was deemed too wet

Jarnel Dhillon
By:
Jarnel Dhillon
04/07/2023
Tennis
Ground officials resort to blow dryers to dry the dampened turf

The Hairdryer Treatment!

The honoured grounds people of Wimbledon would not have been expecting to be using leaf blowers to dry out the court on the first day of The Championships. I suspect towel-wafting and blow drying were not in the job description!

News Insights

  • Play delayed over an hour on Centre Court on Day 1
  • Blowdryers and towels used to speed up the drying
  • Djokovic advances through to Round 2 on his title defence
  • The Serb will face Australian Jordan Thompson in Round Two

Tinpot Wimbledon

Many first time viewers will have been surprised to see that on the greatest stage in tennis, hair dryers were used to dry the court. Pretty village, eh? The multi-million dollar stadium with a newly constructed roof was unable to prevent the downpour from greasing the surface. Both Djokovic and Cachin were wary on their return back to the court, putting pressure on the groundsmen to think on their feet.

Open The Heavens!

Typically, rain over Centre Court will mean to suspend play while the roof is activated. Followed by a quick resumption in play, not on Monday though…

Small amounts of rain managed to sneak its way onto the famous turf posing a problem for the match umpires. Gerry Armstrong, chief umpire, continuously grazed his hand across the court with a look of dismay on his face. Time to call in the blow dryers!

Hurry Up Lads

Water brushes, towels and blow dryers were all used by the groundsmen ordered by Armstrong to get the match resumed as fast as possible. One after another blow dryer followed, despite the ever-present expression on the players’ and Armstrong’s face. Eventually, it was over an hour before the weather cleared and the roof was able to be opened. 

Easy Day At the Office

Despite the lengthy delay, the champion managed to remain focused to complete the job at hand. Dispatching Pedro Cachin in 3 sets. Djokovic seemed a level above Cachin, which has been a common theme for the ATP tour in the last decade. 

It is fair to say the Serbian will take some stopping on his quest for 5 in a row at SW19. Faced with the hardest task in men’s tennis next? Australia’s Jordan Thompson pulled through a 5-set thriller in the 1st round, a 3 and a half hour special. Perfect preparation I say.