My last day of reporting for the Wimbledon Radio Channel … and it was to be a tumultuous finish. Ladies Final Day felt like a big deal and there seemed to be a changing of the guard as Garbine Muguruza saw off Venus Williams.
But my perspective was outside Centre Court, on the hill, and in the VIP hospitality area which yielded some gold.
Hollywood star Woody Harrelson was there… with his mum. When I found him after the match he – very sadly – said no to the interview. I later found out in an extremely entertaining interview with Matt Richardson of Xtra Factor, Virgin Radio drivetime show and stand up comedian, who was sitting two seats away from Woody, that he was super annoyed by Venus’s defeat and was just not in the mood to talk about it.
But Matt was great in the Stella Artois tent – revealing that this beverage played a part in his conception, according to his dad. He’d also been alongside another famous actor who did say “yes” to me. Stanley Tucci starred in The Devil Wears Prada- the sidekick to Meryl Streep – as well as so many other great films. Road to Perdition, The Hunger Games, The Lovely Bones for which he got an academy award nomination and Spotlight to name a few. He’d done his share of fist pumping in the seats earlier and was surprised at the Williams surrender in set two. What a thrill and he’s just shot a film exclusively in London.
It got better – Michael Johnson the 4 time Olympic gold medalist talked of the mental edge he could associate with his sport and tennis as Muguruza broke Williams’ spirit. Another of my heroes ticked off – charming, beaming smile, legend.
But that’s not to forget the people who have made Wimbledon so special. The man from Madrid who couldn’t control himself on the hill as the Spaniard won. He’d watched the whole championships on the TV back home in 37 degree temperatures and now he was here. He lost his girlfriend amid his celebrations.
There was the English couple who backed the underdog and cheered her victory as if it was Konta.
And the Williams fan who had brought her whole family to the hill to cheer the lady who had inspired her to become a tennis coach.
Thank you to everyone and what a lovely finish to another fortnight to remember. Oh and my final step count as roving reporter.. 103,000!