Wimbledon fans can still cheer loudly
Wimbledon fans can still cheer loudly

Wimbledon decider to clash with World Cup final

WIMBLEDON officials will not consider moving the men's singles final to avoid a clash with the World Cup, while also refusing to show the football on a big screen at the All England Club.

But the club will not ban spectators live streaming the football on handheld devices - even from inside centre court.

Wimbledon's policy will be tested on Thursday morning (EST) when late men's quarter-final matches could still be underway when England faces Croatia in Russia.

And it will be far worse on Monday morning (EST), assuming England makes the final, when a clash between the two events is inevitable.

But Wimbledon chief executive Richard Lewis is unconcerned, claiming there was only minimal disruption when England beat Sweden last Sunday morning (EST).

"What will happen next Sunday is centre court will be packed for the men's singles final and I'm sure people will be able to follow the World Cup final," he said.

"It's not unheard of for there to be a ripple of applause or a shout when something special happens in a football tournament, and I'm sure everybody will understand if it does.

"It didn't happen on Saturday particularly, it didn't disturb people.

"I was out and about around the grounds and you could tell when England had scored and it was lovely, it was wonderful.

"We didn't receive one single complaint from anyone who was here who felt their enjoyment of the tennis was interrupted and I'm sure it'll be the same next Sunday.

"The Wi-Fi worked brilliantly, that's an indication we are supporting it, we're not turning the strength of the signal down."

Roger Federer joked about the clash, teasing Russia had more to worry about than Wimbledon.

"I'm more concerned the World Cup final will have issues because the Wimbledon final is going on," he smiled.

"They'll hear every point, 'Wow, Love-15, 15-30.'

"The players are going to look up in the crowd and not understand what's going on at Wimbledon.

A Nadal v Federer decider might not be enough to hold off the World Cup.
A Nadal v Federer decider might not be enough to hold off the World Cup.

"That's how important Wimbledon is to me and to us over here. Maybe you should ask the questions over in Russia, how they're going to feel about Wimbledon being played at the same time."

Lewis said Wimbledon's 2pm start for the final was a tradition, not a contractual obligation.

The tennis will start on BBC1 and switch to BBC2 an hour into the final to accommodate the football.