Wimbledon umpire warns fans for tossing champagne bottles

Fans trying to be a little flirtatious at the wrong time faced the wrath of a Wimbledon umpire.

The official was left with no choice but to issue a warning to patrons of the All England Club during Sunday’s third round match between Anastasia Potapova and Mira Andreeva on Court 3.

During the opening game, Potapova was going through her service routine and what appeared to be a popping sound broke the serve, prompting Australian umpire John Blom to intervene.

Blom said, “Ladies and gentlemen, please, if you’re opening a bottle of champagne, don’t do so because the players are about to serve it.”

An umpire warned fans not to fill bottles for champagne as Anastasia Potapova was serving at Wimbledon.

A crown-shaped accessory is placed on top of a champagne bottle as Britain celebrates the coronation of King Charles with a Big Lunch at Regent’s Park in London, Britain, May 7, 2023.

The announcement was met with applause from the fans and some laughter from the broadcast team, as one announcer called it “the most Wimbledon warning I’ve ever heard”.

Potapova held her serve and tried to stop the bottle-popping, applauding Blom, and nodded her head in approval.

No. However, 22nd seed Potapova lost the match 2–6, 5–7, and Andreeva advanced to the round of 16, where she will face American Madison Keys, who is ranked no. 25.

The rules of the All England Club state that “all corked bottles, including bottles of champagne and sparkling wine, must be opened before being taken into the stands of any court.”

This is not the first time there has been an issue of a champagne bottle exploding at Wimbledon.

Anastasia Potapova nodded in agreement after the umpire warned fans about exploding bottles during her service at Wimbledon on Sunday.

Mira Andreeva of Russia serves to Anastasia Potapova of Russia during their women's singles tennis match on Sunday.
Mira Andreeva of Russia serves to Anastasia Potapova of Russia during their women’s singles tennis match on Sunday.
AFP via Getty Images

In 2019, a cork flew onto the court during a match between Benoit Paire and Jiri Vesely.

A permission was called and at that point the umpire said: “Ladies and gentlemen… enjoy your champagne, but please don’t open it on the court.”

So it’s certainly likely that this won’t be the last time that fans need to be reminded about the joys of Champagne.

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