Wimbledon Museum strikes Olympic gold
Originally published on: 08/03/12 13:18
We couldn’t ask for better ambassadors for the game than Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal who – with 26 Grand Slam titles between them – aim to give back to the game almost as much as they take from it. Now, the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Museum is the latest beneficiary of their generosity after the pair loaned the award-winning museum their gold medals from the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.
The medals represent Nadal’s triumph over Chile’s Fernando Gonzalez in the 2008 singles final and Federer and compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka’s win over Simon Aspelin and Thomas Johansson in the doubles event.
In beating Gonzalez, Nadal became the first male player ranked inside the top five to win the Olympic singles event, while Federer and Wawrinka gave Switzerland its first ever medal in men’s doubles. Both Nadal and Federer’s gold medals will join the newly opened Olympic themed exhibition at the museum on the site of the All England Club, which is gearing up to host Olympic tennis just 20 days after the last ball is struck at the annual Wimbledon Championships.
The Olympic exhibition features highlights of inspiring tennis moments from fourteen previous Olympic Games, with fascinating memorabilia on show including Olympic medals, badges and diplomas, clothing, programmes and souvenirs and plenty more.
Alan Little, the Museum’s Honorary Librarian, has also written a book on the story of tennis at the Olympic Games and the story can be found in the Museum Shop.
The Olympic tournament will be held on the lawns of Wimbledon for nine days from Saturday 28th July to Sunday August 5th. Sixty-four men and 64 women will compete for the Men’s and Ladies’ Singles gold medal, while 32 teams will enter each doubles event, with Wimbledon becoming the first to host an Olympic mixed doubles event for 88 years with the discipline absent from the Games since 1924.
The Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Museum will be closed for the Olympic set up from July 9th-27th and only open to Olympic ticket holders during the tournament itself. Don’t miss out!