Until now, it took a world war to stop the Wimbledon Championships from going ahead. But the Corona-crisis, which had already forced the postponement or cancellation of the Tokyo Olympics, the French Open and the US Open has now meant the entire grass court season, including Wimbledon, can not be run. Here's what happened and how it affects you if you won tickets in our Wimbledon ballot.
"Devastated". That was how Roger Federer described how he felt when he heard Wimbledon had been cancelled. In a heartfelt tweet, he said, “There is no GIF for these things I am feeling".
To the immense disappointment of tennis fans and players everywhere, the AELTC announced on Wednesday, what had become inevitable and said the most famous event in the tennis calendar could not go ahead. Defending champ Simona Halep told The Times she had been hoping, despite everything, that they would find a way to make it happen, but it was the right decision. On the bright side, at least she gets to be reigning champ for two years.
'At least I get to be a reigning Wimbledon champion for two years'
— Times Sport (@TimesSport) April 3, 2020
How we miss the grass, the inevitable upsets, and the long summer evenings catching up on who beat who. The good news is that it will all be back again next year but meanwhile, many of you who were successful in the ballot will be will be wanting to know what this means for you.
What happens to 2020 ballot winners!
The answer is it depends via which ballot you got your tickets. If it was via the public ballot, you are in luck. "Members of the public who paid for tickets in the Wimbledon Public Ballot for this year’s Championships will have their tickets refunded and will be offered the chance to purchase tickets for the same day and court for The Championships 2021. We will be communicating directly with all ticket-holders," says the AELTC.
But if you got your tickets via one of the ballots which the LTA ran, either for Local Tennis Leagues or your club, the rules are different.
You will be refunded in full, by the end of April, but you will not have the option to buy the same tickets for next year's event. You will have to re-enter next year's ballot in the normal way when the time comes.
This is because it takes 12 weeks to run the LTA ballots and the LTA was only 4 weeks in to the process. That meant many club ballots had not yet started and cannot begin now. "It would be unfair to exclude LTA members whose ballots had not yet been run," says the LTA. "This decision has not been taken lightly and, therefore, no exceptions will be made."
If you had been offered the chance to buy tickets and had not bought them, there is no opportunity to do so now (and if your club has been allocated tickets for a ballot yet to be run, it will not go ahead).
In addition, there will not be a ticket re-sale in June as there would normally be as there is no event to have tickets for! Full information about LTA Wimbledon Ballots for the 2021 Championships will be made available in due course and we will of course keep you informed.
Local Tennis League players who would like the chance to buy tickets for the 2021 Championships will need to ensure they are eligible in the normal way (that is, make sure you are are an active player, have BTM membership and have associated your membership with Local tennis Leagues). If you bought a Round Pass solely to ensure you were eligible for the ballot, use it to join a round when the leagues re-start, or be prepared to but a new pass next year.
For more Local Tennis Leagues Ballot information, including eligibility rules, see here
For all the answers to other questions regarding the ballot see the FAQs on the LTA website here