The ESPYS and Wimbledon 2018
Wimbledon and Serena Williams’s Return
By Charlotte Price
The 2018 Wimbledon Championships will take place from July 2-July 15 in London at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club. Wimbledon is the oldest tennis tournament in the world, starting in 1877, and is for sure the most prestigious. Wimbledon is one of four Grand Slam tennis tournaments, along with the Australian Open, French Open, and U.S. Open. Wimbledon is the only major still played on grass, as the Australian Open switched to hardcourt. Wimbledon traditions include a strict dress code for competitors and Royal patronage. The most consumed food at the event is the traditional strawberries and cream; in 2017, fans consumed 34,000 kilograms of English strawberries and 10,000 liters of cream. Keep an eye out for Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton as they plan to attend Wimbledon together as royal sister-in-laws.
Serena Williams is expected to return to the tournament this year. Williams has had a rough road after giving birth to her baby, Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr. in September 2017. Recently, Williams had to drop out of the French Open right before she faced off Maria Sharapova because of a shoulder injury, causing her to not be able to serve. She said that she was beyond disappointed to have to drop out of that match explaining, “I gave up so much, from time with my daughter to time with my family. I put everything on the court, you know. All for this moment.”
Williams is obviously in a tough position, and the world is waiting for her hopeful healthy return at Wimbledon. She is already a 7-time Wimbledon singles champion and 6-time Wimbledon doubles champion. In all, Williams is the holder of 23 singles Grand Slams. Roger Federer made it clear that Serena is the real G.O.A.T in tennis. In addition to the fact that she has so many accomplishments and has “been fascinating to watch”, he acknowledges that “She had a totally different upbringing; I came up through Switzerland with the federation, she did it with her dad and her sister. It’s an amazing story unto itself—and then she became one of the greatest, if not the greatest tennis player of all time.”
What To Watch In The 2018 ESPY Awards
By Juliette Grasso
For the first time ever, the Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly Awards, more commonly known as the ESPYS, will be hosted by a woman, namely race car driver Danica Patrick. The 26th Annual ESPY Awards show, which will take place on July 18th at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, honors the most prestigious athletes, with past honorees including Serena Williams, Venus Williams, Mia Hamm and Marion Jones. However, at the 2018 ESPYS, a group of women are being honored not for the direct impact of their athletic abilities, but for the courage they displayed while speaking out against sexual assault. The survivors who spoke out against Larry Nassar, the now convicted physician at Michigan State University and team doctor for USA Gymnastics for sexual assault and molesting, are being honored with the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at this year’s event.
Alison Overholt, vice-president and editor of ESPN The Magazine said:
We are honored to recognize the courage of these women at The 2018 ESPYS, to acknowledge the power of their voices, and to shine a very well-deserved spotlight on what speaking up, fighting back, and demanding accountability can accomplish. They have shown us all what it truly means to speak truth to power, and through their bravery, they are making change for future generations. By honoring this group who spoke out, we aim to honor all of those who are survivors of abuse.
Over 100 women spoke at Nassar’s trial, and the statements from members of the USA Women’s Olympic team heightened the nation’s awareness of the situation. After long and emotional testimonies of the assaults before a Michigan judge and jury, the victims are not only being honored at the ESPYS, but Michigan State has agreed to pay $500 million dollars to the more than 300 girls who Nassar abused. In one of the largest settlements of its kind, the school will pay $425 million to the 332 plaintiffs from the recent litigation, and set aside another $75 million to plaintiffs who come forward in the future.
The Arthur Ashe Courage Award is given every year to people whose bravery transcends sports. Some previous recipients include Caitlyn Jenner, Billie Jean King, Eunice Kennedy Shriver, Robin Roberts and Loretta Claiborne.