Wimbledon Centre Court’s retractable roof inaugurated

May 18th, 2009 - 2:36 pm ICT by ANI  

London, May 18 (ANI): The new 80 million pound Centre Court retractable roof at Wimbledon worked without a hitch on Sunday as Tim Henman, Andre Agassi, Steffi Graf and Kim Clijsters starred in an exhibition event to mark its unveiling.

“I have not always been in favour of change in tennis, yet this is fantastic. It was cold, wet and windy outside but the court surface was fine and the atmosphere very good. I’ve always thought the atmosphere on Centre Court phenomenal, as it’s the best court in the world. But with this roof, I’m convinced it will be even better,” The Sun quoted Henman, 34, as saying.

Agassi, 39, said: “I was a little worried the court could become slippery but it was great. The sound was incredible. “We’ve had some titanic battles on this court, particularly in last year’s Nadal v Federer final. The atmosphere, though, will be even better when the roof is closed.”

The project took three years and all 15,000 tickets for yesterday’s initial ’shout out’ were sold in less than five minutes.

The button was pressed to close the roof at 2.40 p.m. and seven minutes later it was completely shut.

Henman joined Clijsters to beat the husband and wife duo of Agassi and Graf 7-6 in an entertaining doubles.

Agassi then beat Henman 6-4 before Clijsters, 25, who is coming out of retirement later this year, defeated Graf 6-4.

Graf, 39, who triumphed at Wimbledon seven times, said: “The memories came flooding back.” (ANI)

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