A few days have now passed since the last ball was struck on the hallowed lawn of the All England Lawn Tennis Club and the 2016 Wimbledon Championships drew to a close.
While it possibly was not the greatest of Wimbledons, ruined so often by the weather, for the local tennis community there could have been no better conclusion to the Championships; Andy Murray winning a second title and being the first British player in 80 years to win multiple singles crowns.
There were twelve different nations winning titles this year – incredibly Great Britain, for so long in the tennis doldrums, walked off with the most, six, followed by the USA with three and then France with two titles. Five different players from Great Britain and the same from the USA claimed titles, France had three and Australia had two.
Serena Williams hit the fastest women’s serve of the event at 124 mph (199 kmph) and she served the most aces with 74 while Milos Raonic, the first Canadian man to reach the final at a major, had the fastest serve of the entire event at 147 mph (236 kmph). He also had the most aces with 145 but only served eight in the final, such was Murray’s returning prowess.
On BBC the men’s final viewership peaked a 13.3million for a 69% peak share while the women’s final peaked at 4.8million. Despite the lousy weather it was apparently the most watched Wimbledon to date on the host broadcaster for American television while in Canada the final with Raonic was the most watched tennis match in Canada peaking at 2.4million.
The rare middle Sunday of play, only the fourth time that has happened, and attracted 24,626 people. 22,000 tickets were available on line and sold out in 27 minutes as 111,000 applied for tickets.
The wonderful Wimbledon Museum which is open all year, was gifted items. Both Andy Murray and Serena gave their winning outfits to the museum. Milos Raonic donated some items of his outfit while Marcus Willis, who was the “feel good” story of the early part of Wimbledon, donated his full outfit and the much discussed “nightie” dress will also be part of the collection, donated by Zhang Shuai.
When it comes to memorabilia, the Wimbledon towel is the most prized item. Even the players make sure they get a sizable supply for themselves and it became all too amusing as player after player conceded they were stocking up, from the Williams sisters to Wawrinka. The gentlemen’s towel notched up 18,070 items sold. It was the highest selling souvenir. The balance of the top five were the pen 15,407, the ladies towel 10,907, the Championship key ring 7,905 and the Championships magnet 6,944.
Food and drink caters (no pun intended) in a big way towards the profits – 177,135 glasses of Pimm’s were consumed along with 139,435 portions of strawberries, 133,800 English scones while the players peeled 2,772 kilos of bananas.
And in parting … Court 19 was retired after 20 consecutive years of service. It will make way for a new public plaza as part of the redevelopment of Court 1. The last player to use it was fittingly Andy Murray who practiced on that court before the men’s final.
Last year Wimbledon made a surplus of almost 34 million pounds, what it will be in 2016 remains to be seen.