Sport on TV: Somebody call a doctor, Wimbledon's gone crazy

Phew, what a week at Wimbledon. You could almost not bother with the second half – and that would relieve us of the pain of watching Andy Murray grimacing his way to another agonising final.

On the first instalment of the BBC's highlights on Today at Wimbledon, John Inverdale called it "Manic Monday" as Rafa Nadal was knocked out, but the presenter peaked far too soon. By the time the mayhem unfolded on Wounded Wednesday, they were playing the theme tune to Casualty and not playing much tennis, because there was hardly anyone left to knock up with.

Usually the nation pulls its curtains for two weeks at the height of summer. This time it was more like the nurses pulling the curtains around an ailing patient.

"An extraordinary litany of drama and personal tragedy," proclaimed Inverdale on that Weeping, Wailing Wednesday. Steady on, old chap, nobody died – although after listening to some of the players you would think it had been a pretty close call.

John McEnroe added that it had been "by far and away the craziest day I've ever been associated with", and you'd better believe he's seen some craziness in his time. He had begun the week by enthusing, "I just like all the cat-fighting going on", referring to the hurtful words exchanged between Maria Sharapova and Serena Williams – though of course we know now that only sticks, stones and charming stretches of English lawn can break bones.

Wobbly Wednesday featured the ultimate alley-cat scrap between Sharapova and Michelle Larcher De Brito, who is apparently the only woman on the circuit with a louder scream than Maria when she hits the ball. They seemed to be trying to shriek each other off the court.

Then Sharapova started shouting encouragement to herself as well. But she was one cat who couldn't land on her feet, and if you included the squeals whenever she slipped over on the grass, the combined din was enough to make anyone want to run away from SW19 screaming – joining all the players who were already doing so like an evacuation sequence from some disaster movie.

The sound of Victoria Azarenka losing her footing, and seemingly her mind, would have graced any horror film. So congratulations to Nadal, who barely left his mark on the verdant pastures of south-west London but at least wasn't moaning on about his body falling apart, even if he did manage to mention it a few times.

"I don't want to talk about my knee," he insisted after losing to Steve Darcis. "Everything that I can say today about my knee is an excuse." He may have produced the first limp performance of the week but at least he departed with more decorum than even Mr Darcy could have shown in absenting himself from a 19th-century drawing-room.

It was more about Tracy Austin than Jane Austen as royal etiquette was breached on the Thursday. As if there hadn't already been enough injury, the BBC decided to add a little bit of insult when they accidentally broadcast McEnroe's chat with the Duchess of Cornwall as she met the assembled officials and ballboys and girls – and the pundits McEnroe, Austin and Tim Henman ambushed the line-up.

"Do you play?" McEnroe inquired, to which the reply came: "I'm afraid I'm much too old." Clarence House clearance came through that it was "not an issue", but there might not be any swords touching McEnroe's shoulders in the near future.

Mac the Knife is so sharp that he wields his words like a scalpel. On Friday he described Laura Robson's drop-shot: "It's the perfect grass-court shot. She didn't chop down on it, she sliced through it." Part surgery, part slasher movie: it was the perfect sign-off for the week.

Suggested Topics
Sport
sportWWE latest including Sting vs Triple H, Brock Lesnar vs Roman Reigns and The Undertaker vs Bray Wyatt
Arts and Entertainment
Louis Theroux: By Reason of Insanity takes him behind the bars again
tvBy Reason of Insanity, TV review
Arts and Entertainment
Cassetteboy's latest video is called Emperor's New Clothes rap
videoThe political parody genius duo strike again with new video
Arts and Entertainment
tvPoldark, TV review
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Junior Web Designer - Client Liaison

£6 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join a gro...

Recruitment Genius: Service Delivery Manager

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Service Delivery Manager is required to join...

Recruitment Genius: Massage Therapist / Sports Therapist

£12000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A opportunity has arisen for a ...

Ashdown Group: Practice Accountant - Bournemouth - £38,000

£32000 - £38000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful accountancy practice in...

Day In a Page

Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing