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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Semi-finalists spotted... Sabine Liscki favourtie to lift Venus Rosewater Dish

I had recently posted of the upset that formidable Serena Williams suffered at the hands of German Sabine Liscki…. now the Semi-final line-up is drawn.

Sabine Lisicki (GER) Vs Agnieszka Radwanska [Pol]; Marion Bartoli of France to play against Kirsten Flipkens of Belgium ~ the way seeds have tumbled down can be better understood when you substitute Names by Numbers : it is going to be 23 V 4; 15 V 20 respectively.  Some have already started fancying the chances of Sabine Lisicki, the new and hitherto unheralded favourite to lift the Venus Rosewater Dish……..   She positively strolled out on to Court No.1, displaying an easy confidence and leading the way as her diffident opponent Kaia Kanepi hung back several paces behind. 

Whatever it be Wimbledon would see a new women’s champion as none of the 4 have won the title before. Kirsten Flipkens had another  upset win over 2011 titlist Petra Kvitova in three sets and  emulated the feat of her country-woman Kim Clijsters three years ago to reach the Semis.   As it has happened the player who was seeking her first entry into Semis played fearlessly against the former champion  Kvitova. 

It you are wondering what ‘Venus Rosewater Dish’ is all about………….it is the title – the Ladies' Singles Trophy awarded at The Championships, Wimbledon, first presented to the Champion in 1886. The 50 guineas trophy is an 18 3/4 inch diameter, partially gilded, sterling silver salver made in 1864 by Messrs Elkington and Co. Ltd ofBirmingham, and is a copy of an electrotype by Caspar Enderlein from the original in the Louvre. It is tradition for the winner to be awarded the trophy by the President of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, HRH the Duke of Kent, and then walk a lap around the court to display the trophy to the crowd and photographers. The winner does not keep the trophy, which remains in the museum at the All-England club, but from 1949 to 2006 all Champions have received a miniature replica of the trophy (diameter 8 inches), and from 2007 all Champions have received a three-quarter replica of the trophy, bearing the names of all past Champions (diameter 14 inches).

The theme of decoration is unrelated to tennis or sport, but is mythological. The central boss depicts the figure of Sophrosyne, the personification of temperance and moderation, seated on a chest with a lamp in her right hand and a jug in her left, with various attributes such as a sickle, fork and caduceus around her. The four reserves on the boss of the dish each contain a classical god, together with elements.

Lisicki, is basking in glory as the woman who beat Serena and if she can lay her hands on Rosewater dish – this is her best chance.   She had a relatively easy match in QF against Kanepi ranked no. 46 and just blew it at 6-3, 6-3 in 65 minutes. 

If you are curious enough, the Gentleman who wins receives a silver gilt cup 18.5 inches (about 47 cm) in height and 7.5 inches (about 19 cm) in diameter. The trophy has been awarded since 1887 and bears the inscription: "All England Lawn Tennis Club Single Handed Championship of the World." ~ for Ladies it is not the Cup but  a sterling silver salver commonly known as the "Venus Rosewater Dish", or simply the "Rosewater Dish". The winners of the Gentlemen's Doubles, Ladies' Doubles, and Mixed Doubles events receive silver cups.  The runner-up in each event receives an inscribed silver plate.

You may be surprised to know the prize money is being awarded from 1968 only - the first year that professional players were allowed to compete in the Championships. Before 2007, among grand slam tournaments, Wimbledon and the French Open awarded more prize money in men's events than in women's events. In 2007, Wimbledon changed this policy, giving the same money for both events.  Men play 5 setters while it is 3 for women.   In April 2013, The All England Club announced the largest prize money for a tennis tournament so far. The total prize money has been increased by about 40% from 2012 to £22,560,000.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.

3rd July 2013

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