Wimbledon confirm underwear rule change in bid to ‘relieve anxiety’

The All England Club has officially confirmed that underwear rules at Wimbledon have been relaxed following complaints which saw some players forced to compete without wearing a bra. From the 2023 edition of The Championships, female competitors will be allowed to wear mid and dark coloured undershorts to alleviate anxiety caused for players who are on their period during the tournament. 

Wimbledon has officially relaxed their underwear rules following recent speculation as organisers confirmed on Thursday that female players would be able to wear undershorts of any colour from 2023 onwards. It comes after several complaints from top stars, with the likes of former world No 20 Daria Saville previously revealing that she was forced to purposefully skip her periods during the tournament as a result of the all-white underwear rule.

But players will no longer need to go to such lengths as the All England club’s Committee of Management decided to allow female players to “wear mid/dark-coloured undershorts if they choose to.” Explaining the decision, the club’s chief executive said they were hoping to “relieve anxiety” caused to players who were concerned about menstruating during the tournament.

“We are committed to supporting the players and listening to their feedback as to how they can perform at their best,” Sally Bolton said in a statement. “I’m pleased to confirm that, following consultation with players and representatives of several stakeholder groups, the Committee of Management has taken the decision to update the white clothing rule at Wimbledon.

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As well as pushback from King and Saville, 1987 men’s champion Pat Cash previously told BBC Radio 5 Live that the rule had left some female players forced to play braless. “Some of the girls have been told to go back and change their bras and tops because they had slight colour on them,” he said.

“I believe some of the girls didn’t have suitable sports bras and had to go without them. It has absolutely gone ridiculous.” And the underwear rule caused carnage during this year’s Championships when Mihaela Buzarnescu was about to play her opening match against Nastasja Mariana Schunk, as tournament supervisors noticed her bra did not comply with the requirements and forced her to change it before she could play.

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