Event Previews

ESPN releases full Wimbledon schedule; July 1-14, 500 matches across multi-platforms and app

Tennis? ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN+ and ESPN3 present two weeks' worth; All Available on the ESPN App, 145 Hours on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC


ESPN begins its enormous undertaking, presenting two weeks chock-full  of Wimbledon, tennis’ oldest tournament. Every serve and every shot, begins Monday.

So you think broadcast detail is defined by running the entire NCAA Tournament. Wimbledon brings an incomparable dimension. Through its on-air , cable and digital platforms ESPN will show more tennis over two weeks than most of the world sees in a lifetime. The network has almost 200 people in Great Britain to present Super Bowl like coverage from the historic All-England Club.

As a convenience and resource for readers and viewers, these are the programming details:

Full schedule is followed by talent


Date, Time (ET), Event, Network(s)

 Mon, July 1 – Sun, July 14 (no play Sun, 7/7)

 6 am   All 18 Courts, all day

The Wimbledon Channel (from AELTC)

Two feeds with press conferences – Coverage includes Spanish language,

Networks: ESPN3, ESPN+ Live 

Mon, July 1 – Fri, July 5  

6 am – 4:30 pm (to 4 pm July 4) Early Round Action, ESPN, Live

Sat, July 6    

7 – 8 am   Breakfast at Wimbledon, ESPN, Live

8 am – 5 pm   Early Round Action, ESPN, Live

Sun, July 7

3 – 6 pm   Highlights of Week One, ABC, Tape

Mon, July 8

8 am – 4 pm   Round of 16, Centre Court, ESPN, Live

6 am – 4 pm    Round of 16, No.1 Court & others, ESPN2, Live

Tue, July 9   

8 am – 4 pm     Ladies’ Quarterfinals, Centre Court, ESPN, Live

 8 – 2 pm          Ladies’ Quarterfinals, No.1 Court, ESPN2, Live

Wed, July 10

8 am – 4 pm      Gentlemen’s Quarterfinals, Centre Court, ESPN, Live

 8 am – 3 pm     Gentlemen’s Quarterfinals, No.1 Court, ESPN2, Live

Thu July 11

7 – 8 am          Breakfast at Wimbledon, ESPN, Live

8 am – 1 pm    Ladies’ Semifinals, ESPN, Live

Fri, July 12

7 – 8 am           Breakfast at Wimbledon, ESPN, Live

8 am – 2 pm    Gentlemen’s Semifinals, ESPN, Live

Sat, July 13

8 am – 9 am    Breakfast at Wimbledon, ESPN, Live

9 am – 3 pm    Ladies’ Championship, Gentlemen’s Doubles Championship

                          and Ladies’ Doubles Championship, ESPN, Live 

3 – 6 pm          Ladies’ Championship, ABC, Encore


Sun, July 14

8 am – 9 am     Breakfast at Wimbledon, ESPN, Live

9 am – 3 pm     Gentlemen’s Championship, Mixed Doubles Championship, ESPN, Live

3 – 6 pm           Gentlemen’s Championship, ABC, Encore

ESPN3 will offer a second screen experience for the semifinals and Championships


The ESPN Tennis Team, the best in television, at Wimbledon:

  • Fowler (l) and Drysdale (courtesy: ESPN)

    Darren Cahill, who once reached the US Open semifinals and the Australian Open doubles finals and went on to coach fellow Australian Lleyton Hewitt and Andre Agassi, has worked for ESPN since 2007. In 2017-18 he coached Simona Halep to the No. 1 ranking a French Open title.

  • Cliff Drysdale, who was inducted into the Tennis Hall of Fame in July 2013, reached the US Open finals and is a two-time Wimbledon and French Open semifinalist. He has been with ESPN since its first tennis telecast in 1979.  Drysdale was a leader on the court – a top player for many years who was one of the first to use a two-hand backhand – and off the court, as the first president of the ATP.
  • Chrissie Evert, a Hall of Famer who joined ESPN in 2011, her 18 Major titles include three at Wimbledon. She recorded the best career win-loss record in history, reached more Major singles finals than any man or woman (34), and reached the semis or better in 34 consecutive Majors (1971-83).  The AP Female Athlete of the Year four times, in 1976 she was the first woman to be the sole recipient of Sports Illustrated’s Sportswoman of the Year.
  • Mary Joe Fernandez, an ESPN analyst since 2000, played in three Major singles finals and won two Majors in doubles, won a Gold Medal in doubles at the 1992 and 1996 Olympics and a Bronze in singles in 1992.  She was the coach of the United States’ Fed Cup team for eight years, stepping down in 2016, and coached the 2012 and ’16 U.S. women’s Olympic team.
  • Mardy Fish, a former longtime pro who once was No. 7 in the world, is an analyst. The Minnesota native won six events on tour, an Olympic Silver Medal in 2004 and reached the quarterfinals of three Majors – Australia, French and Wimbledon.  He was the top-ranked American man in 2011 when he reached a career high of No. 7.  He retired after the 2015 US Open.
  • Chris Fowler – who joined ESPN in 1986, is the lead ESPN/ABC college football play caller and joined the ESPN tennis team in 2003 – will call matches, including the singles finals. He hosted College GameDay on football Saturdays 1990-2014, and has hosted World Cup soccer, college basketball including the Final Four, the X Games and Triple Crown horse racing.  Originally, he was the first host of Scholastic Sports America and later was a SportsCenter
  • Brad Gilbert, whose flair and unique nicknames for players has enlivened ESPN’s tennis telecasts since 2004, parlayed his playing career – peaking at a No. 4 ranking and once reaching the quarterfinals of the US Open and at Wimbledon – into coaching Andre Agassi (six Major titles with Brad), Andy Roddick (US Open victory) and Andy Murray.
  • Jason Goodall will serve as a studio and match analyst. A one-time standout among Juniors in Britain whose career was ended by injury at 21, he later coached ESPN’s Mary Joe Fernandez and Pam Shriver and the British Fed Cup team.
  • Bethanie Mattek-Sands will split time between playing and visiting as guest analyst. The 33-year old from Minnesota has captured five Major doubles titles, plus three Major mixed doubles crowns (including at the 2018 US Open after returning to action following a horrific knee injury in 2017) and an Olympic Gold Medal in mixed doubles in 2016.
  • John McEnroe won seven Major singles titles, including three at Wimbledon, during his storied career, which included 10 more Major crowns in doubles or mixed doubles. He also led the U.S. to four Davis Cup titles and won the NCAA’s while attending Stanford.  He has worked for ESPN since 2009.
  • Patrick McEnroe, who has worked for ESPN since 1995, was a three-time singles All-American at Stanford – where the team won NCAA titles in 1986 and 1988 – and served as General Manager, USTA Elite Player Development from 2008 – 2015.  He won the 1992 French Open doubles title and reached the 1991 Australian Open semifinals in singles.  He served as the U.S. Davis Cup captain 2001-2010; in 2007 the team won its first championship since 1995.
  • Chris McKendry returns as host, a role she has filled at all the Majors for ESPN. She joined ESPN in 1996 as a SportsCenter anchor, and later hosted the Little League World Series and X Games.  As of Spring 2016, she focuses on tennis.  She attended Drexel University on a tennis scholarship.
  • Patrick Mouratoglou, Serena Williams’ coach since 2012, helped her to unprecedented success deep into her mid-30s – 10 Major titles, an Olympic Gold Medal and a stranglehold on the WTA No. 1 ranking. A longtime coach, including great results over seven years with Marcos Baghdatis, he will serve as an analyst.
  • Tom Rinaldi will serve as a reporter and will call matches. Since 2003, his features and interviews have graced a wide variety of ESPN programs – including SportsCenter, Outside the Lines, E:60 and event telecasts such as Wimbledon, golf’s Majors, college football and more – winning numerous awards.
  • Pam Shriver, who started working for ESPN in 1990, long before her Hall of Fame career ended, played in the US Open finals at age 16 (losing to Evert) and three times in the Wimbledon semifinals. She won 21 Grand Slam titles in women’s doubles (another in Mixed) including five at Wimbledon plus a Gold Medal in doubles at the 1988 Olympics.
  • Rennae Stubbs, who enjoyed a long career in doubles – winning six Majors: four in women’s and two in mixed, representing Australia at four Olympic Games and for 17 years in Fed Cup, will be an analyst. She’s worked for ESPN for many years, and for NBC at the Olympics and for Tennis Channel.


Surveying the Fields

  • They just won’t go away. The Big Three in the gentlemen’s draw – No. 1-ranked and defending Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic, No. 2 and recent French Open winner Rafael Nadal and No. 3 Roger Federer, the leader with 20 Major titles including a Wimbledon-best eight – have shared the last 10 Major crowns and 32 of the most recent 38.  Including two Wimbledon victories by Andy Murray (who, by the way, is entered in doubles as he recovers from surgery), those four have taken the Wimbledon trophy every year starting in 2003.  Will this stranglehold be broken?
  • Getting closer and closer to breaking through at a Major are No. 4-6: Dominic Thiem (25), Alexander Zverev (22) and Stefanos Tsitsipas (20). Eventually, the generational page will turn.
  • It’s quite the opposite on the ladies’ side where nine different women have captured the last 10 Majors (only Naomi Osaka was able to win a second).
  • In that span, a number of women have won their first Major, including Caroline WozniackiOsakaSimona Halep, Sloane Stephens, Jelena Ostapenko and new No. 1 Ash Barty at the recent French Open. Will any of these players back up their first with a second?
  • Former Major winners Petra Kvitova, American Sloane StephensGarbiñe Muguruza, Victoria Azarenka and defending champ Angelique Kerberhave to be considered.  So do standouts who are yet to take a big trophy:  Elina Svitolina, Karolina PliskovaKiki Bertens and American Madison Keys.
  • Then there’s Serena Williams. If she is the last woman standing, it would be her first title as a mom and her 24th Major title, tying the record held by Australia’s Margaret Court. And don’t dismiss her sister Venus, a five time champion on the grass courts at the All England Club.
David J. Halberstam

David is a 40-year + industry veteran who served as play-by-play announcer for St. John's University basketball in New York and as radio play-by-play voice of the Miami Heat in South Florida. He is the author of Sports on New York Radio: A Play-by-Play History and The Fundamentals of Sports Media and Sponsorship Sales: Developing New Accounts.

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