London 2012: Scandal rumbles on as spectators react with fury to empty seats during Roger Federer match on Wimbledon’s Centre Court

 

Olympic spectators reacted with fury today as hundreds of seats remained empty at Wimbledon’s Centre Court while world number One Roger Federer played.

Tennis fans hit out at organisers, reporting that many of the seats were filled by Army troops and Wimbledon workers to mask the embarrassing turnout.

It comes on the day as Locog found itself under fire for too many ticket holders not turning up to events leaving many disappointed.

Lisa Novitt, 49, an investment banker from Loughton, Essex, said: “When Federer was on it was quiet, but when other players came on it got even worse. I feel sorry for the players.

“How did this happen? I wanted to go to athletics and gymnastics and now you watch the TV and it’s empty. It’s criminal really.”

Her daughter student Charlotte Novitt, 21, said there was a lack lustre atmosphere in Centre Court.

She said: “Normally at Wimbledon there’s clapping, but everyone is really spread out and there are points where no one claps or says anything. You could hear a pin drop.

“It’s not what we expected. It’s boring to watch and there’s no atmosphere.”

Wimbledon’s Centre Court today saw top seed Roger Federer beat France’s Julien Benneteau in two sets in less than an hour, while Argentine Del Potro took on Italy’s Andreas Seppi. In the women’s game Belarusian Victoria Azarenka faced Irina-Camelia Begu and Germany’s Yanina Wickmayer took on Caroline Wozniacki.

On Twitter dismayed spectators expressed their anger.

Rayhan Haque wrote: “LOCOG please sort this madness. 60% seats empty on Court 2 at Wimbledon. Fans missing out #ticketshambles #olympics”

BBC 6 News Presenter Adrian Larkin wrote on the micro blogging site: “Look at all those empty seats at Wimbledon. No tickets and yet it's like a crypt in there to see two top seeds. Play ball @sebcoe”

Tony Dolce added: “#Olympictickets I am still confused over the tickets thing watching Wimbledon Tennis and Centre court looks 3/4 empty but no website.”

Sarah Rathbone noted: “Wimbledon centre court - pricey good seats are mostly empty, cheap seats at the back are full.”

Paul Masterton ·said: “The sight of so many empty seats at Wimbledonis actually heartbreaking for those of us who would have loved to be there :(“

Senam Beheton wrote: “As a tennis fan, it makes me sick to see all these empty seats at #Olympics events on #Wimbledon grounds! Makes me wanna get on a plane now!”

Other fans questioned why Locog was not addressing the situation. Slodge suggested: “There's room for another few thousand in Wimbledon - court 2empty - they should sell ground passes on the day!”

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk