Wimbledon Corner: Dispatches from SW19

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THERE IS a rarely such a thing as a sporting certainty but the winner of one match at the All England Club yesterday was never going to be anyone but a 22-year-old called Delgado.

Quite which 22-year-old Delgado it was going to be was a different matter, as one competitor was Ramon Delgado of Paraguay, ranked number 93 in the world and with total career earnings of pounds 300,000, and the other was the unrelated Jamie Delgado of Great Britain, ranked 372 with career earnings of a mere pounds 37,500.

The odds against the home-grown player even getting as far as SW19 had been extremely high. The odds for him then to have been drawn to play against a man of the same age with the same name were astronomical, and the chances of a victory greater still.

Fortunately for the Briton, the outcome defied all logic, and he beat his namesake in straight sets, 6-2, 6-1, 7-5.

Today's number: 409,500

The winner of this year's women's singles title will receive pounds 409,500, or 90 per cent, of the pounds 455,000 that the men's winner will pick up. At the French Open the women also earn 90 per cent and at the Australian Open the figure is 94 per cent. Only at the US Open do women players earn the same as men.