Wimbledon: Did Serena Williams get the royal snub?


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So much for curtsy practice.

Defending Wimbledon champion and No. 1-seeded Serena Williams has been scheduled to play her second-round Wimbledon match Thursday against Anna Chakvetadze on Court 2. After much discussion over the last four days (none of it instigated by her), it turns out all her curtsy work has gone for no good purpose. Serena won’t be near Centre Court when Queen Elizabeth II arrives to watch tennis on Centre Court for the first time since 1977.

It’s not a surprise that Britain’s own Andy Murray, the men’s fourth seed, will play on Centre Court on Thursday. Maybe it’s not even a surprise that women’s No. 3 seed Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark is on second. Denmark still has royalty, right? And not that the queen is likely to stay around that long, but Rafael Nadal, heartthrob of many women, is the big name of the third match.

But Williams had seemed so eager to please, telling us about how curtsy practice was going, how she had to work on not getting too much wrist action, learning how to bend her knees, etc. She didn’t talk about the curtsy unprompted. It was a question that was asked over and over.

When Serena saw Thursday’s schedule, though, one wonders what thoughts went through her mind. You know, did she briefly wonder about wanting to stuff a tennis racket down the scheduler’s throat? And then curtsy?


-- Diane Pucin