Parting Shots 2007

THERE was just one match of the day on Centre Court today.
Two chaps called Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal played the men’s singles final to a pretty decent standard.
The one with the posh blazer and Swiss timing won for the fifth time in a row, equalling some record or other.
You had to feel sorry for the Spanish one dressed like a pirate.
Both Nadal and Hawk-Eye’s line calls pushed Federer like never before.
The iceman even swore at one point before eventually restoring order in the fifth set.
Foreign reporters with one eye on a taxi to the airport reckoned it was a classic.
But this was just the warm up act for Scot Jamie Murray and Serb Jelena Jankovic in the Mixed Doubles Final.
Jeremy Bates had already done his bit with a British win a few hours earlier in the Gentlemen’s Senior Invitation Doubles.

Over on Court One the end of term atmosphere was taking hold.
Two delirious Frenchmen gave away their rackets and most of their clothing after winning the men’s doubles title.
One of them had to borrow a shirt from his partner’s coach for the presentation.
And so we came to the very last match to be played at Wimbledon 2007, starring local hero Jamie and world number 3 Jelena.
With a cool evening breeze blowing across the court, the script was already written as they defeated Jonas Bjorkman and Alicia Molik in three sets.

That made Jamie, 21, the first British main title winner at Wimbledon since Jeremy Bates and Jo Durie won the mixed doubles in 1987.
Applauding from the stands was younger brother Andy and their emotional mum Judy.
At their press conference just a few minutes ago, I asked Jamie and Jelena if the fact they are now Wimbledon champions had sunk in yet.
“I don’t know,” replied Jamie. “It feels pretty good though.”
I then asked if they could recall their thoughts after the winning point and also as they went up into the royal box to collect their trophies.
“I was just looking for that kiss from her, to be honest,” smiled Jamie.
Jelena added: “I was motivating him every time.
“When it was a break point, I’d tell him, ‘Jamie, let’s go. This return, hit a good one because you gonna get many kisses, you know.’
“I’m really happy that we won this tournament. It’s amazing.
“It’s really an incredible feeling for me to be there and to hold the trophy.
“It’s something that I always dreamed of.”
Jamie was embraced by Andy as he left the court. “He said he was so proud of what I’ve done.”
Now the happy couple are off to this evening’s Championship Ball.
“He was looking so forward to this ball,” said Jelena of Jamie.
“He was asking me the whole day what kind of dress I’m wearing, if it’s going to be short or long.
“I had to disappoint him. It’s very long.”
A fairytale ending to a damp fortnight which, incredibly, finished on time.
The Murray brothers and Jelena will be back next year, along with a fixed roof on Centre Court.
Sadly for Nadal, also returning will be the near tennis perfection that is Roger Federer.
What a way to end Wimbledon 2007.
A final sunny weekend served up a memorable conclusion to what had previously been a frustrating fortnight.
The real fans queued overnight on chilly pavements.
Many were soaked by the rain. All were determined to secure a ticket.

Contrast that with the people who turn up, usually late, with seats for both Centre and No 1 Courts.
One couple just couldn’t decide which one to choose.
So they went for a long lunch instead.
Despite the rain, the long hours, the rain, lack of sleep and the rain, the last 13 days have been an absolute delight.
The fact that the Championships have finished on time is nothing short of miraculous.
Great credit must go to referee Andrew Jarrett and all the staff working behind the scenes here.
American sports writer and broadcasting legend Bud Collins was across the way from me again this year.
And, yes, he wore the trousers with the strawberries today at the end of his 40th Wimbledon.
It may have been damp and dismal most of the time, but the All England Club Championships of 2007 ended with a classic men’s final.
And then came the icing on the cake for British fans.
Now the last point has been won and the light is fading.
It’s time, yet again, to pack up my laptop, clear my locker, gather my belongings together and head for home.
Or as someone said recently: “That is that. The end.”
The 2008 Championships begin on Monday June 23.
I’m already looking forward to it.
Shall we make it a date?
Wimbledon Blogs 2007
Wimbledon Blogs 2006
Wimbledon Official Site

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