July 13, 2024

Robert Tuvey reacts to AFC Wimbledon signing Max Kilman from Wolves for £70m…

England’s dramatic success at Euro 2024 is such a big deal that it’s impacting other major sporting events.

That includes Wimbledon, which saw a third-round match between No. 2-ranked Novak Djokovic and Alexei Popyrin briefly halted as celebrations broke out in the stands at Centre Court.

It wasn’t a spectacular rally or match-winning ace that brought a roar out of fans on Saturday. Instead, as Popyrin prepared to serve in the second set, the crowd suddenly began loudly cheering and applauding.

In tennis, noise as a player prepares to serve is normally a faux pas, and announcements urging quiet are common in major finals. Fans can be ejected for the kind of behavior that, in soccer, is utterly normal.

This time, though, everyone knew the deal. Both players eased up for a moment, as it was quickly clear what was going on. Roughly 300 miles east in Düsseldorf, England had survived a penalty-kick tiebreaker at Euro 2024, seeing off Switzerland 5-3 after a 1-1 draw after 120 minutes.

While it wasn’t being shown on any screens in the stadium, it became obvious that at least a few hundred attendees were also following Euro 2024 on their phones.

That meant that when Trent Alexander-Arnold’s penalty hit the back of the net, it was party time, regardless of what was going on between Djokovic and Popyrin.

As the crowd continued its applause, the tennis players even pantomimed a bit of soccer, with Djokovic pretending to kick a ball while Popyrin took on the role of goalkeeper.

Once Center Court calmed down enough for play to resume, Djokovic would go on to claim victory in four sets.

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