Seven-time champion Serena Williams snubbed the Centre Court centenary celebrations after Wimbledon officials allegedly refused to let her keep her five courtesy cars for the whole tournament.
Sunday’s event united the great and good of the tennis world, with Roger Federer among those to have flown in to take part in the ceremony. But despite having played at Wimbledon that week, the former World No.1 was nowhere to be seen.
VIDEO: Wimbledon Centenary Celebration with former champions including Djokovic and Federer
Williams was allegedly disappointed by Wimbledon's decision not to allow her to use the five courtesy cars provided by the All England for the duration of the tournament.
Williams is understood to have asked for the use of five vehicles, for herself, her husband, her sister, and mother and her coach. While ordinary players are allocated a single car, some top players are granted an additional vehicle for their coach, although Federer is among the very few believed to have the use of five cars at the championships when he is competing.
A Wimbledon source said Serena was disappointed when Wimbledon rejected her request to extend the use of the cars past the normal limit of 24 hours after a player is knocked out
“She wanted to use the cars for the whole two weeks because that’s what happens at the other grand slams. She was told that was not possible because they had to be used by the other players. She was not happy. Maybe that’s why she refused to take part in the centenary parade.”
Journalists who asked why Williams, given her stature in the history of Centre Court, was not present were told she had “gone home”, leading to the assumption she had returned to Florida.
However, on Sunday evening she posted photographs on social media of herself and her husband, Alexis Ohanian, at the Rolling Stones concert at Hyde Park.
Meanwhile on Tuesday evening she was at Sketch restaurant in Mayfair with her husband and the couple’s daughter, and later at the premier of Thor: Love and Thunder at Leicester Square.
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