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Best Moments in Wimbledon’s History

  • Andy Murray became the first British champion after 77 years
  • The longest game took 11 hours and 5 minutes across three days
  • The most famous final was held between Borg and McEnroe in 1981
best moments in Wimbledon's history
Image source – I went to Wimbledon, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The second Grand Slam of the year, the 2021 Wimbledon will begin next Monday, on the 28th of June. The most famous tennis tournament returns back after a one-year break with hopefully some great matches. Until the start of the tournament you can switch into tennis with our list. Which includes the best moments in Wimbledon’s history.

Surely every tennis fan has a favorite moment from Wimbledon from the most recent final between Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer to a more classic one. The biggest tennis stars have played in the tournament’s long history and became champions. From Roger Federer to Martina Navratilova who have the most singles titles in the Open Era. Beside victories fans could witness other iconic moments as well at South West Four. Like the longest game in 2010 or John McEnroe’s famous protest against the umpire in 1981.

Best moments in Wimbledon’s history

5. Andy Murray’s getting the first British victory after 77 years

British fans have been waiting for a men’s singles victory for a very long time when finally Andy Murray won the title in 2013. The Scottish player had already played in the final the year before but then he lost to Roger Federer. In the following year Murray faced Novak Djokovic in the last match and managed to beat him in three straight sets. The whole nation was celebrating his famous victory which ended the long drought. Murray managed to win his second Wimbledon title in 2016 after beating Milos Raonic in the final. Sadly since then he was suffering with injuries and other issues. But he will take part in this year’s Wimbledon again which might be his last appearance in the tournament.

4. Martina Navratilova’s 9th victory

The Czech-American player set up several records during her career. Like having the most combined Grand Slam titles (59) or the longest winning streak with 74 games. But probably her biggest achievement is having the most Wimbledon singles titles. Navratilova won her first one in 1978, at the age of only 21 when she defeated American Chris Evert in the final. Then in 1987 she tied the former record holder, Helen Wills Moody with her eighth title.

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And she broke that record three years later, in 1990 at the age of 33. When she won her last Grand Slam title against another American, Zina Garrison. Navratilova was the oldest winner in the women’s singles until Serena Williams’ victory in 2016. The American star was 35 then, her victory now would be another milestone. Online sportsbooks in the UK mention her in the top favorites with the odds of 7.50. 

best moments in Wimbledon's history
Centre Court Wimbledon – Spiralz from England, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

3. The longest game

But Wimbledon is not only about the finals and the champions. Players can produce amazing performances at any stage in the tournament. Like John Isner and Nicolas Mahut did in 2010 in the first round when they played for 11 hours and 5 minutes. Surely their game belongs to the best moments in Wimbledon’s history which won’t be easy to surpass. The score is just as remarkable as the length of the five sets: 6-4, 3-6, 6-7, 7-6, 70-68.

They played the match over three days in the spotlight of the world, which hasn’t seen anything like this before. Just the fifth set lasted for 8 hours and 11 minutes. Due to the special rule of Wimbledon, which doesn’t allow a tiebreaker in the ultimate set. And of course, to the players, who just couldn’t deal with each other and kept on playing. At the end world No 19 Isner against world No 148 Mahut in an amazing match.

2. Nadal-Federer final in 2008

The last final in 2019 between Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer was a classic match. But the Swiss champion played an even more memorable one against Rafael Nadal in 2008. By that time Federer had won five singles titles in a row and was the favorite again. He defeated Nadal in the previous two finals and everyone expected the same to happen. But the Spanish star defied the odds and won the final with 6-4, 6-4, 6-7, 6-7, 9-7.

Of course, this was a long game as well as it lasted 4 hours and 48 minutes. It also had two rain delays and nail-biting tiebreakers, where Federer managed to come back to the game. But even he couldn’t stop Nadal from winning his first Wimbledon title. The Spanish world No 3 won’t play in this year’s tournament as it was announced by online sportsbook news in the UK. But Federer is set to return to his favorite tournament where he holds the all-time record with 8 singles titles.

best moments in Wimbledon's history
Wimbledon – Kate from UK, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

1. Borg-McEnroe final with longest tiebreaker in 1980

We find another legendary final in the top of our list of the best moments in Wimbledon’s history. The match between Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe in 1980. They were the best players of the time with some very different characters. World No 1 Swedish Borg was a very calm and reserved player who had already won the title in the previous four years. While American  world No2 McEnroe was a loud, outgoing player  who arrived as the winner of  the US Open.

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McEnroe was more famous about his temper as he often got into confrontations with the umpires. His famous phrase, You cannot be serious was said in the following year. But back to the final in 1980. Borg was leading 2-1 in the fourth set and had two match points which were denied by the American. Then he had another five match points in the tiebreaker which was eventually won by McEnroe 18-16. In the final set Borg managed to win the game and his fifth title. But their tiebreaker was so special that it inspired the film Borg/McEnroe. While their match was named the best Wimbledon final by ESPN.

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