The All England Lawn Tennis Club has announced that tie-breaks will be played at 12-12 in the final set at Wimbledon from next year.
After one of the men’s semi-finals at this year’s tournament lasted six hours and 35 minutes, the AELTC said “the time had come” to introduce a tie-break method at “a reasonable point” in a deciding set.
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South African Kevin Anderson called for a rethink of the format despite prevailing 26-24 in the final set of his semi-final with John Isner after a final set that lasted almost three hours.
The winner will be the first player or team to reach seven points with an advantage of two or more points.
“While we know the instances of matches extending deep into the final set are rare, we feel that a tie-break at 12-12 strikes an equitable balance between allowing players ample opportunity to complete the match to advantage, while also providing certainty that the match will reach a conclusion in an acceptable time frame,” said AELTC chairman Philip Brook.
It will apply to all Wimbledon events – qualifying, men’s, women’s, mixed and junior singles and doubles.