tennis

The year sport and politics became inseparable

18 December 2021 9:00 am

Sport and politics have always been intertwined, but this was the year they became joined at the hip. Yorkshire racism;…

Lord Lucan, Joan Collins and the greatest dinner ever

6 November 2021 9:00 am

There’s a narrow stretch of Chelsea, south of the King’s Road from Oakley Street to Ormonde Gate, that reminds me…

Why the Reds have got the blues

30 October 2021 9:00 am

Not so much the hair dryer: more a gentle home perm. Contemplating the increasingly less youthful visage of Ole Gunnar…

I’d pick the Vero Beach retirement home for old ladies over Annabel’s

9 October 2021 9:00 am

Around 20 or so years ago I had a point for match point on a perfect grass court at Fort…

Can we talk about Emma Raducanu's Christianity?

16 September 2021 4:36 pm

I’ve just been looking at photographs of Emma Raducanu again, this time focusing on her upper chest. She usually wears…

Blue-tick Twitter is spoiling Emma Raducanu's victory

13 September 2021 7:10 am

How do you take the pleasure out of something so marvellous and joyful as Emma Raducanu’s US open victory last…

Emma Raducanu can save tennis

8 September 2021 12:40 am

Something perfect at the death of summer: Emma Raducanu in full flight, smoking winners up the lines and progressing without…

The absurdity of tennis players’ toilet breaks

4 September 2021 9:00 am

Forgive the personal question, but how long does it take you to, you know, go to the gents, ladies, non-binary?…

In defence of Novak Djokovic

1 August 2021 7:23 pm

Why does no one like Novak Djokovic? If Roger Federer is the player that even non-tennis fans can’t help but…

Why do the Japanese still seem so ambivalent about Naomi Osaka?

29 July 2021 7:15 am

It had all started so well for Naomi Osaka. Dressed in the colours of the Japanese flag, the tennis star…

The dying art of sports commentary

3 July 2021 9:00 am

Wimbledon is here at last, after its absence in 2020. What struck me watching the French Open on television a…

Forget football – rugby is the real beautiful game

26 June 2021 9:00 am

The question is surely destined to become a pub quiz staple: ‘Who moved a bottle 18 inches across a table…

In praise of chastity

12 June 2021 9:00 am

New York It’s party time in the Bagel, or at least private party time. Yours truly is an extra man…

Have tennis players always been expected to give interviews?

5 June 2021 9:00 am

Game, set, chat Japanese tennis player Naomi Osaka withdrew from the French Open after being fined $15,000 for failing to…

In defence of Naomi Osaka

2 June 2021 12:03 am

‘Kawaisou’ or ‘wagamama’ (poor thing or spoiled brat)? That’s the question Japanese tennis fans have been asking ever since world number…

Dear Mary: How can we use our neighbour’s tennis court without inviting him to play?

17 April 2021 9:00 am

Q. Our neighbours have a tennis court which, under the property’s previous owner, we enjoyed playing men’s fours on. The…

The science of tennis grunts

5 September 2020 9:00 am

How grunting helps players win

I went to hell and back to meet my new granddaughter

6 June 2020 9:00 am

Wolfsegg, Austria I have finally understood what’s wrong with the modern world: motorways. These dehumanising slabs of asphalt covering our…

Croquet is the perfect sport for social distancing

9 May 2020 9:00 am

In Mr Alton’s absence, I thought readers might want a column about sport. The problem is that I’m largely indifferent…

How tennis went socialist

28 March 2020 9:00 am

Desperately boring times but very healthy ones. No parties, no girls, not too much boozing, lots of smoking and reading…

The appeal of ugly men

15 February 2020 9:00 am

Gstaad Lenin Moreno is in trouble, despite his very unchristian first name. For any of you unfamiliar with the name,…

Coco Gauff won fair and square, but she played terrible tennis

13 July 2019 9:00 am

Martina Navratilova has never been shy about telling it like it is. She came out when other athletes were hiding…

What the new generation of tennis players could learn from Rocket Rod Laver

13 July 2019 9:00 am

A chum was in Waitrose a year or two back, and was bending down with some difficulty to look at…

Boris is the only one who can save the Tories

15 June 2019 9:00 am

A lady once offered to go to bed with me if I could ensure that she would write The Spectator’s…

Roger Federer during his fourth round match against Stefanos Tsitsipas in the 2019 Australian Credit: photo by Jack Thomas/Getty Images

My hero Roger Federer

26 January 2019 9:00 am

Asked how he was feeling as he was about to give a speech to a ladies group, Mark Twain, looking…