Monday, June 24th
The week begins with three stories about young women. The first : Ashleigh Barty climbs to the top of WTA world rankings, dethroning Naomi Osaka. The second: the French player, Alizé Lim, is photographed with her compatriot, Florent Manadou, ex Olympic swimming champion. The third: a certain Tiffani Adams is left alone on a plane after landing at Toronto, overlooked by the cabin crew whilst she slept. Quite a traumatising experience… Apart from that, get ready to say goodbye to Marcos Baghdatis who announced his intention to retire after Wimbledon.
Tuesday, June 25th
Talking of Wimbledon: the London tournament starts next week but is already making headlines as a result of Rafa Nadal’s complaints. He is unhappy at learning that he has been ranked at number three, behind Roger Federer despite being ahead of the Swiss in the ATP world rankings The stars clash but John McInroe declares that the next number one in the world wil be Auger-Aliassime of whom he is an admirer. Another ex number one, Boris Becker, is forced to sell some of his trophies to help meet his debts. Apart from that, the big news: Gael Montfils and Elina Svitolina are still together, confirming this through their social networks! But the real hero of the day is François de Rugy, French environment minister, who decided to give up his tie in the struggle against the heatwave. Thug Life.
Wednesday, June 26th
« Roger Federer is the greatest player of all time », affirmed his main rival, Novak Djokovic, jumping to the defence of the Swiss in the dispute between Nadal and Wimbledon’s seeding committee. The qualifying rounds on the London grass began with the early elimination of the strange Dustin Brown. Another defeat of the day, this time at the Antalya tournament: Benoit Paire accused the organisers of endangering the players by making them play in temperatures of 45 degrees centigrade. Temperatures could reach new heights if Donald Trump turns his threats into action: the President refusing to rule out the the possibility of a « short war » with Iran. To lighten the mood, let’s draw attention to coming events in the cinema this summer: Toy Story, Men In Black, Aladdin and Godzilla. Welcome back to the 1990s.
Thursday, June 27th
Jair Boisonaro, who made the fight against drugs one of his priorities, is finding it hard to explain how 39 kilos of cocaine was found in the hold of the plane reserved for the Brazilian president. Another faux pas: Meghan Markle shocks the United Kingdom by altering her engagement ring to accommodate even more diamonds. In an interview, Alicia Keys referred to her friend Serena Williams as « an inspiring woman, a beautiful black woman dominating a white sport ». In the meantime, the WTA decides to in turn to reform the competition of nations. The Fed Cup by BNP Paribas will adopt a formula of a 6-day competition held in 12 countries from next year. A change which will have to take place without Simona Halep if she carries out her threat to boycott the new format.
Friday, June 28th
44 million euros in prize money, up 11.8 % since 2018: at Wimbledon we are fighting for glory, the Queen but also for big money. Talking of money, a 34-year old New Yorker lost his head and stands accused of killing his father over the latter’s threat to cut off his weekly allowance. In Europe the heatwave also deranged certain people, like the inhabitant of Toulouse, arrested stark naked in the street claiming to be the son of God. Less deluded but more effective, Pliskova and Kerber rose to the top of the tournament at Eastbourne and Kecmanovic and Sonego reached their first finals in Antalya.
Saturday, June 29th
« I am just happy to be playing tennis again », declared Andy Murray, paired in the doubles at Wimbledon with Pierre-Hugues Herbert. And so say all of us, Andy. All the more since the Scotsman could also be involved in the mixed doubles with Serena Williams, a legendary pairing. Whilst waiting for the start of the London tournament, the other tournaments of the week delivered their results: Karolina Pliskova and Taylor Fritz won at Eastbourne and the Italian, Lorenzo Sonego, triumphed against Miomir Kecmanovic. At the same time on the border between the two Koreas Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un together took several steps towards peace and some giant strides towards raising their public image.
Sunday, June 30th
Wimbledon, Day One: everybody is ready apart from Borna Coric, who has dropped out at the last minute. Amongst the local gamblers Djokovic is the favourite on the men’s side in front of Federer Nadal and Tsitsipas. Barty heads the list in front of Pliskova, Serena and Kerber for the women. We also learn that Goran Ivanisevic will be advising Novak Djokovic during the fortnight and that the centre court roof will figure on his own Twitter account. Sporting news of the day is dominated by big transfers in the NBA and excitement over the Austrian F1 Grand Prix. From now on the players dressed in white on the green lawns of London will take centre stage.
By Régis Delanoë