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No Wimbledon? We might as well cancel summer altogether. Something seems to happen during the Wimbledon fortnight. Nobody watches tennis at any other time, but for two weeks in July we're up there with the world experts – Federer's serve, Murray's hip operations, whether ice baths are a good thing, and if the grass growing speeds up when they close the roof. Lovely tennis.

The BBC haven't given up. They still plan to show 50 hours of tennis television. Greatest 'hits' and a countdown to the best finals. Tim, Sue and Boris will be making small talk as we work through the highlights, while John and Martina will be joining them via satellite to add a little more pace to the proceedings. So no changes there. 

Now it's up to you to start thinking how you can make the whole experience more than a re-run. In fact why not make your home just a little bit more centre court.

Get creative with astro turf

Astroturf sofa

image: Bill Kasman

You could carpet an entire room, or just buy a large rug's worth for the garden. The colour is spot on and really lifts the spirits. Astro turf isn't just confined to the ground. You can buy armchairs, sofas or just a couple of cushions, which really hit the spot if you live out of town and already have a lawn. 

Eat A LOT of strawberries

Celebrate Wimbledon at home | strawberries

image: Ylanite Kloppens

This is stellar year for our favourite summer fruit and instead of the miserly bowl you might buy during the actual event, at home you can pile 'em high, douse them with sugar and  submerge them in cream. Don't skimp. Really indulge yourself. And given millions of strawberries will reportedly go to waste without Wimbledon this year, you can consider this a service to the nation.

Drink too much Pimms

Celebrate Wimbledon at home | Pimms

image: Whitney

Still the best summer drink out there. Buy handfuls of mint to put in jugs alongside the cucumbers and lemonade. After the first couple you probably won't care if you've seen it all before. 

WIN a Picnic for Two and delicious chocolate from Coco Chocolatier >>

Create Murray Mound

Henman Hill

image: Jonathanawhite

... or Henman Hill out of a pile of cushions covered with a greenish throw (or astroturf. It truly is versatile).

The children can throw themselves off, or practice their Mexican waves. Lead the team in a sing-along of 'Congratulations'. Try to remember where you were when Cliff Richard entertained the masses in 1996. If you were too young to care don't worry. The BBC are bound to reprise the moment – they're showing the greatest hits, remember. Sadly they won't be able to resist.

Play a game of 'Which tennis player are you?'

Celebrate Wimbledon at home | Serena Williams

image: Edwin Martinez

Dress up as your favourite player. Will you wear Becker's bum huggers or the Agassi baggies? Maybe go bold with Maria Bueno's frilly knickers or chic and pleat with a skirt that skims the ground. The tournaments started in 1877 (men only), so you've got a few looks to play around with. I mean remember Serena Williams in a tutu?

You could go the whole hog and buy masks. Who's going as Claire Balding? The Beeb will be drafting her into the studio too – more light relief. As she is omnipresent this mask could actually be an investment.

There's even a selection of lifesize cutouts of your favourite players available to buy. Is that Andy Murray lurking in the hall, Nadal behind the sofa? 

Have a picnic 


This is the moment to treat yourself to an Indytute tea. Scones, jam, macaroons – the works. Obviously you can't have one every day, so save it for the grand final and make do on the other days with cucumber sandwiches (strictly no crusts). Make sure you have the appropriate paper plates and napkins. It's the little touches that make it all work. Gold cutlery? Centrepiece of tennis balls? Folded towels? Why did we ever think we would miss the real thing?

Game, set, match...

FURTHER READING: For other ways to soak up the great outdoors, have a read of our great date ideas.

main image: Spiralz

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