Great Britain

Wimbledon set for £100m windfall after coronavirus cancellation as owners took out pandemic insurance 17 years ago


WIMBLEDON bosses will be putting through an insurance claim "in excess of £100million" following the cancelling of this year's tennis tournament.

That's because tennis chiefs updated their policy back in 2003 following the SARS outbreak that would cover the event in case of a pandemic.

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And now as a result of the £1.5m-a-year contract, SW19 will recoup some of the millions lost as a result of the decision to cancel, according to The Times.

Speaking to the newspaper, Richard Lewis, the All England chief executive, said: “Of course we are fortunate to have insurance.

"It helps but it doesn’t solve all the problems.”

Wimbledon is the only one of the four tennis Grand Slams to have the insurance for pandemics.

SunSport reported that for the first time since 1945 – the final year of the Second World War – there will be no Grand Slam event in SW19.

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The two-week tournament, which was set to begin on Monday June 29, was cancelled following an emergency board meeting held on teleconference between Wimbledon chiefs.

The decision was made by a committee involving four-time Wimbledon semi-finalist Tim Henman, former Cabinet secretary Lord Gus O’Donnell, new chairman Ian Hewitt and ex-player turned sports administrator Debbie Jevans, who was involved in the running of the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics.

Two-time winner Andy Murray said: "Very sad that the Fever-Tree Championships at Queen's and Wimbledon have been cancelled this year.

"But with all that is going on in the world right now, everyone’s health is definitely the most important thing!

"Looking forward to getting back out on the grass next year already! Hope everyone is staying safe and healthy."

The club will offer refunds to ticket holders who had hoped to be eating strawberries and cream in three months’ time.

The 13.5-acre All England Club grounds (which swells to 42 acres when car parks are included) will now be opened up for the use of the NHS.


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