|Wimbledon on the BBC|
|Venue: All England Club Dates: 3-16 July|
|Coverage: Follow on BBC TV, BBC Radio and online with further coverage across Red Button, Connected TVs and BBC Sport website.|
“There’s a certain beauty and majesty to Wimbledon – the elegance, the way the grass looks on TV.”
Seven-time Grand Slam champion John McEnroe sums up the Championships at the All England Club rather well.
Pristine surfaces, the all-white dress code, strawberries and, most importantly, the world’s best tennis players all striving for one of sport’s most prestigious prizes.
And it is all about to start again. Here are the key things you need to know.
The wait is almost over…
The gates open at Wimbledon on Monday, but the fun started a week ago.
Qualifying began on Monday, 26 June as lower-ranked players not automatically in the draw competed for the 16 remaining men’s places and 12 women’s spots.
Britain’s Alex Ward, ranked world number 855, took one of them, but the likes of Marcus Willis, Liam Broady and Katy Dunne did not make it.
The seedings, given to the top 32 players in each singles draw, were announced on Wednesday.
Things really started getting moving on Friday, when the draw was made.
Play begins on the outside courts at 11:30 BST on Monday, before Britain’s Andy Murray, the reigning men’s champion, has the honour of opening on Centre Court at 13:00 BST.
Can Murray win again?
Murray, Wimbledon champion in 2013 and 2016, has struggled with a hip injury in the lead-up to his title defence.
The world number one was forced him to pull out of two warm-up matches at the Hurlingham Club, but practised at the All England Club on Friday and Saturday.
And, putting aside his injury concerns, the Scot has been well short of his blistering form 12 months ago.
The Scot’s start to the grass-court season has not been ideal – he lost his only match on the surface so far this year.
Murray, 30, won the Queen’s title before both Wimbledon triumphs, but this month he suffered a surprise first-round defeat by Australian world number 90 Jordan Thompson at the Aegon Championships.
“There is no guarantee that I won’t do well at Wimbledon, but it certainly would have helped to have had more matches,” said Murray before his injury troubles.
Federer chasing record eighth title
Seven-time champion Roger Federer, fresh from winning his fourth title of the year at the Halle Open, is still seen by many as the man to beat.
The 35-year-old Swiss won the Australian Open in January – a record 18th Grand Slam title.
Another success at Wimbledon will put him clear of the men’s record of seven singles titles he shares with Pete Sampras, and move him to within one of Martina Navratilova’s all-time record of nine.
Federer’s long-time rival Rafael Nadal is also among the Wimbledon favourites after winning his 10th French Open crown at Roland Garros.
Nadal, 31, has overcome his own injury problems to climb back up to second in the world rankings.
Novak Djokovic held all four Grand Slam titles going into last year’s Championships. Now he holds none.
The 30-year-old Serb, who rediscovered some form by winning the Eastbourne title, has dropped to fourth in the world rankings after a troubled year in which he has split with his coaching team.
No Serena Williams and no Maria Sharapova. The ladies’ draw might be lacking a bit of stardust without the sport’s two biggest names – 22-time Grand Slam champion Williams is pregnant, Sharapova is injured – but that does not mean it will be any less exciting.
Will we see a new women’s champion this year? More than likely. Only two former winners – Venus Williams and Petra Kvitova – are playing at SW19.
Kvitova – champion in 2011 and 2014 – would be a fairytale winner as she continues her return from a career-threatening hand injury sustained when she was stabbed by an intruder at her home.
The new girl on the block, 20-year-old French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko, might just stun everyone again, while Czech Karolina Pliskova will be feeling confident about her chances after winning the Eastbourne singles.
And then, of course, there’s Britain’s Johanna Konta (more on her next).
Konta aiming to end barren British run
Like Murray, British women’s number one Johanna Konta has seen her preparations marred by an injury scare.
Konta, ranked seventh in the world, said on Friday she was “not 100% certain” if she will be fit enough to play at Wimbledon after suffering a back injury.
The 26-year-old is aiming to raise hopes of a first female British winner since Virginia Wade in 1977.
Konta is the first top-10 British woman at Wimbledon since Jo Durie reached the quarter-finals in 1984, however she has only ever won one match in the main draw.
Her build-up to this year’s tournament began with a run to the Nottingham Open final, where she lost to world number 70 Donna Vekic, a potential second-round opponent.
She then lost in the second round of Birmingham’s Aegon Classic but then beat Ostapenko and world number one Angelique Kerber to reach the Eastbourne semi-finals, only to withdraw having suffered the injury late in her quarter-final win over Kerber.
Plenty of Britons – but no Evans
Joining Murray and Konta in the main draw are 10 other British players.
Kyle Edmund and Aljaz Bedene qualified automatically as they are ranked inside the world’s top 100, while seven players have been given wildcards.
Naomi Broady, Heather Watson, Laura Robson and Katie Boulter go into the women’s draw, along with Brydan Klein, Cameron Norrie and James Ward in the men’s.
Alex Ward, ranked world number 855, joined them after battling through three rounds of qualifying at Roehampton.
However, Dan Evans – ranked 50th in the world – will not play after revealing that he failed a drugs test in April.
Wimbledon in numbers
9 – record number of singles titles (Martina Navratilova)
250 – the number of ball boys and girls
14,979 – the number of seats on Centre Court
39,000 – capacity in the grounds at any one time
54,250 – number of balls used during the Championships
140,000 – servings of strawberries sold
320,000 – glasses of Pimm’s sold
31,600,000 – total prize money (£) for 2017
Wimbledon remains one of the few major UK sporting events for which you can still buy tickets on the day of play.
That means, unless you’ve already bagged one in the ballot, you’re going to have to join the famous queue.
Thousands of people gather daily in nearby Wimbledon Park to wait for a limited number of tickets which are available for Centre Court, Court One and Court Two (except for the last four days on Centre Court, when all are sold in advance).
Several thousand ground passes, meaning fans can use unreserved seating and standing room on courts three to 18, are available each day at the turnstiles.
But don’t rely on using your debit card to pay for them – it is cash only.
Don’t miss a thing…
Not got a ticket? Can’t be bothered with the queue? Don’t worry, because there will be more than 150 hours of coverage on BBC One and BBC Two over two weeks, plus 100 hours of action on BBC Radio 5 live.
Sue Barker will once again be at the helm, while three-time Wimbledon champion Boris Becker returns to our commentary team alongside Pat Cash, Annabel Croft, Tim Henman and John McEnroe and many more.
You can also take control of the coverage yourself by choosing between up to 15 live HD streams on your smartphone, tablet and connected TVs.
Murray will once again give us an exclusive insight into his Wimbledon campaign with his column for the BBC Sport website.
Wimbledon on the BBC turns 90
This year is a special anniversary as The Championships marks 90 years of coverage on the BBC.
Coverage of the Championships started on radio in 1927, and a decade later TV viewers were able to switch on and catch the action.
Sue Barker set off around the world in a special BBC One documentary to find out what is it about the green grass of Wimbledon that makes us all become tennis fans for two weeks every summer.
“I still get goose-bumps when I walk into the All England Lawn Tennis Club at the start of tournament and that will never change,” says the 1977 semi-finalist.
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