Of all the rules at Wimbledon – and there are many – surely none is more outdated than one referring to players’ clothing. Not the part that insists they should wear “almost entirely white” attire, something players do not mind. But rather the one that refers to the colour of their underwear and how visible it is during play. First Venus Williams was asked to change her pink bra in a first-round match, which drew a suitably clipped response to a media inquiry: “I don’t like talking about bras in press conferences. It’s weird.” On Wednesday, four junior doubles players were asked to change their underwear because it could be seen under their white shorts, and on Thursday the 18‑year‑old Austrian Jurij Rodionov was asked by a supervisor to show her his underwear. “Yesterday I wore black pants and nobody said anything and today I wore blue and suddenly it’s a problem,” he said. “It was a big surprise for me.” Rodionov said Wimbledon provided him with two white pairs. “One was a little bit too big but these ones were OK,” he said. Asked if the rule was outdated, he said: “Wimbledon is always special. Maybe it’s a little bit too much but I like that the players only have to wear white. It’s tradition.”There seemed to be an interesting thread about this dress code thingy, especially when it concerned Wimbledon officials demanding players to show them the top of their underwear in order to verify the colour, like in this story:
Junior player told to change underwear after falling foul of rulesOf course, this news report did not go unnoticed and it prompted a reader to make a little wisecrack (sic) of his own in the newspaper itself:
A junior player at Wimbledon was made to lower part of his shorts to reveal the colour of his underwear on Thursday as part of a crackdown on non-regulation clothing. Play was delayed for at least 10 minutes when Austrian junior Jurij Rodionov was ordered off court to change his non-white underwear because it contravened Wimbledon’s strict dress code. In a bizarre scene, the 18-year-old had to pull down his shorts a little at the request of a female official so a call could be made. After the game, he said it was a “big surprise” as he had worn the same dark underwear in his first game and they had gone unnoticed.