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Wimbledon explainer: Format for the annual Grand Slam tennis tournament

Here’s a look at the format for the annual Wimbledon Grand Slam event.

Wimbledon Championship 2022
Larysa Ustymenko takes a selfie with the Wimbledon tennis championship logo on the outside of the Ralph Lauren flagship store, on New Bond Street, London.
Photo by Dominic Lipinski/PA Images via Getty Images

Wimbledon 2022 gets started Monday, June 27 at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London. Here’s a look at how the competition works, along with some of the traditions of what is considered the most prestigious Grand Slam event.

When does Wimbledon take place?

Wimbledon traditionally takes place in the last week of June and the first week of July. For the first time ever, Wimbledon will have matches on what is known as Middle Sunday in 2022. This year’s event will run from June 27 to July 10.

How many players participate in Wimbledon?

There are 128 players in both the men’s and women’s singles competitions. Players are admitted as direct entries based on international rankings, wildcards, or qualifications through the qualifying rounds. There are 104 men and 108 women who get direct entry. There are eight wildcard slots in each bracket and qualifiers make up the rest of the field. Wildcards are determined based solely by the Committee of Management, who usually pick players that will generate public interest in the competition.

Which players have won the most Wimbledon titles?

Since the open era in 1968, Roger Federer holds the most men’s singles titles and Martina Navratilova holds the most women’s singles titles.

What are some traditions at Wimbledon?

Wimbledon remains the only Grand Slam event to be played on grass courts. There’s a strict all-white or primarily white dress code for the players, who are referred to as “Gentlemen” and “Ladies” rather than men and women. Strawberries and cream have become synonymous with Wimbledon and are considered a fan favorite at the concession stands. Wimbledon only advertises its official sponsors on the side boards.