Wimbledon FINALLY goes digital with new online ticket ballot for 2020 tournament after All England Club ditches 151-year-old postal entries
- Online ballots for tickets to Wimbledon are set to be introduced for 2020
- The All England tradition of the postal ballot has be in place for 151 years
- Currently you can only get tickets by sending a stamped, addressed envelope
Getting tickets to Wimbledon could be moved forward into the digital age with plans to abandon pen and paper for an online ballot system.
The move is planned for next year’s tournament, with an official announcement potentially made as early as this month, The Financial Times reported.
Plans to abandon the 151-year-old tradition of the postal ballot could shake the traditional and restrictive ticketing regulations imposed by the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club.
A source close to the Wimbledon leadership told the publication: ‘The benefits outweigh the disadvantages’.
Getting tickets to Wimbledon could be moved into the digital age with plans to abandon pen and paper for an online ballot system
MailOnline has approached the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club for comment.
Currently, those who want to get tickets for the tournament have to fill out a form months in advanced and send it by mail with a stamped-addressed envelope.
Meanwhile, about 17 per cent of the tickets are for debentures who are wealthy patrons who pay £80,000 for guaranteed seats over five years.
For those unable to get tickets through the ballot or afford debentures seats, 1,500 tickets are made available during the two-week event.
However fans looking to get these tickets have to line up – with some even camping overnight.
Only a small number of tickets are available for international visitors online.
The move is planned for next year’s tournament, with an official announcement potentially made as early as this month, The Financial Times reported
Earlier this year, Wimbledon chairman Philip Brook (right) hinted that the old-fashioned way of entering the Championships’ ballot could soon be upgraded to a more technological system
Earlier this year, Wimbledon chairman Philip Brook hinted that the old-fashioned way of entering the Championships’ ballot could soon be upgraded to a more technological system.
The All England Club chief said that they are looking at ways of the internet replacing the cumbersome method of sending in a stamped addressed envelope, although he explained that this throwback still has its advantages.
‘It is hard work, you have to send in a form with a stamped addressed envelope,’ admitted Brook in an interview with the 2Barrys podcast, hosted by tennis broadcasters Barry Millns and Barry Cowan.
‘We have for the last three or four years put our overseas ballot online. This is a bit of a test to see what happens. We are looking closely at the whole question of the ballot and whether we might move it online.
Currently you can only get tickets to Wimbledon by sending a stamped, addressed envelope
‘We are a bit worried about that we might be completely swamped with demand. Secondly we think with a paper based system it is harder for people to cheat.’
Brook, one of the sport’s leading power-brokers, also criticised the clash of the new men’s team events coming up later this year.
He said: ‘It cannot be right that the Davis Cup will not have ranking points and yet this new tournament that is part owned by ATP (the ATP Cup, to be staged in Australia) will. The reason is because of who owns the ranking system and that’s a nonsense.’
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