Andy Murray Wimbledon 2019

Wimbledon grass courts under spotlight as Andy Murray’s ex-coach Petchey questions the surface

Respected commentator and professional coach Mark Petchey has questioned the white lines of the Wimbledon grass courts saying they add an element of luck into matches


Wimbledon is famous for it’s green grass and bright white lines which create a unique look and feel for both players and spectators during the famous two weeks of the year but now Mark Petchey has spoken out about how much the white lines effect the play when a ball bounces on them.

Speaking on his Twitter account Petchey posed the question as to why more players don’t complain due to the impact the lines have on the ball when it bounces on them. Petchey said, “Not sure why these white lines are not complained about more by the players. They hinder your stroke so much as the bounce is so variable. Adds another element of luck into matches on grass”

Many commentators will point out the effect that the lines have on the bounce of the ball when they are commentating on a grass court tennis match. The general view is that the ball will bounce much more slowly after it hits a white line of a grass court, in effect making it look like it’s stopped. This often causes the players to miss-time their shot because they don’t have time to adjust their swing to the altered bounce of the ball.

There is often a similar impact on the ball when playing on the clay courts of Roland Garros as the white lines on clay are also different to the rest of the surface hence the ball can behave differently after hitting one of those lines.

But Petchey is a credible voice on the subject having mentored and coached Sir Andy Murray during the early part of his career from 2005-2206. Petchey also had a decent playing career of his own reaching a career high of No.80 in the world and making it through to the 3rd round of Wimbledon in 1997.

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Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.