As the Semi Finals of the ongoing 141st edition of the Championships, Wimbledon is about to commence at Wimbledon, London, an estimated billion people across more than 200 countries are expected to tune in to their television sets to experience the yearly coveted event of Tennis.
It was a bit different almost a century ago though, when the match between Bunny Austin and George Lyttleton Rogers was first televised on this day almost 90 years ago in 1928.
Prior to that though, the only way to follow the proceedings of the game live was to hear the commentary on radio, unless you be one of the few lucky spectators to get a ticket.
Fast forward 90 years and Virtual Reality allows you to have a stand view from anywhere in the world. Phew! Who saw that coming!
It is important to note that only 200 people watched the final of the first championships in 1877, which increased to some thousands in the 1920s and 1930s, when BBC started broadcasting Wimbledon matches. Part of that can also be credited to the allowance of women to play the sport from that era. That is still nothing when compared to the billion odd number of today.
The cameras that day installed on two sides of the court, the south-east corner for close-up and the opposite side for general viewing, were almost an alien entity to the spectators on the field, many of whom were reportedly watching them more than the match that they have bought the ticket for itself.
Today Tennis has grown to become one of the most popular sports on the planet; certainly the most popular individual sport. Bet, nobody in the court that day realised that they were witnessing the very tool which, as the world was getting ready for the consumerism drug to kick in, was to bring a paradigm shift in the popularity of their beloved sport in years to come!