My week: Andrew Jarrett

The Wimbledon Championships referee ensures that the tournament keeps to schedule
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The Independent Online


This is my first year as Championships referee. One of the crucial things we do is the order of play for the following day, which is a bit of a Rubik's cube. I make sure I have a restful evening because it's going to be the last one for a while. My wife and daughter and dog are around so it's nice to spend a bit of time with them. We live in Staffordshire, but I'm staying locally with a lovely family.


About 6.30am I open the curtains to see rain for the first time in three weeks - and on the first day of my new job. We're meant to start at 12 o'clock but we're delayed until one and we play for only about half an hour. I'm courtside to make the judgement call to pull the covers across in the first match of the championships - Roger Federer on Centre Court. We eventually abandon play at 7.20pm, which is a great disappointment. We eat on the job and we have the occasional munch on a strawberry.


There's an "OK, we've had a false start, but let's get going" feeling. We're 64 matches behind schedule and you can't catch that up in one day, you just need to plough on. One of the highlights is watching Andre Agassi coming out on to Centre Court. He gets a wonderful reception.


Everyone has been looking forward to the Henman-Federer match since the draw. They're originally down at 4pm but we have an unfortunate withdrawal. There's a lot of scurrying around to get Roger and Tim ready to play earlier, but we get them on court with minimal delay.


We start the doubles, which normally would have started on Tuesday, and try to complete the second round of the singles. There isn't time to finish the Andy Murray match. It's important they don't play a crucial stage of the match in poor conditions.


It's a lovely day and we're expecting high temperatures. The heat rule comes in if it gets too hot. It's a complicated formula to do with temperature and humidity, but it affects only the ladies' singles. We've got an eye on the World Cup fixtures. David Nalbandian is Argentinian and a huge football fan and he plays at 12 o'clock. We're sensitive to other interests, but there are no guarantees. The tournament comes first - it always has done and it always will.

Interview by Sophie Morris