Tennis’ third Grand Slam tournament and the most tradition-laden, The Championships, Wimbledon begin Monday. The fortnight at SW19 in London is one of the great events on the sporting calendar. It’s an event so big, it now has three U.S. TV partners, NBC, ESPN and now Tennis Channel which begins its first year of airing the tournament. Roger Federer and Ana Ivanovic are your #1 seeds. Since the tournament will be underway when most of us in the States will be at work, there are a couple of ways to keep track of your favorite players online.
Wimbledon prefers you to buy your way in and watch the matches through its official online partner, Mediazone. You’ll have to shell out $24.99 for the entire fortnight or $9.99 for a one day pass.
However, if your internet service provider is partnered with ESPN, you’ll be able to watch matches for free through the ESPN360 service.
If you don’t want to pay anything or don’t have access to ESPN360, there’s Radio Wimbledon which is available online or for no extra charge on Sirius Satellite Radio.
DirecTV and Dish Network subscribers will get an interactive presentation with 7 different channels and four dedicated to different courts.
ESPN2 begins its coverage every morning at 7 ET/4 PT. Tennis Channel will have Wimbledon Primetime at 7 p.m. each night. NBC begins its coverage this Saturday.
Euro 2008 continues with the semifinals this week. Germany takes on Turkey on Wednesday. ESPN has coverage at 2:30 p.m. The other semifinal will pit Russia against Spain. That will air on ESPN2 on Thursday also at 2:30 p.m. Both games are also available on ESPN360. The final will be held next Sunday and ABC will carry the game.
Hard to believe that I would put baseball third after two European events, but it’s happened. Interleague play continues this week. Intriguing matchups in the first part of the week include the Red Sox hosting Arizona, San Francisco at Cleveland in a matchup of two franchises that met in the 1954 World Series, the Yankees will be in Pittsburgh in a rematch of the 1960 World Series, and the Cubs host Baltimore. Later in the week, the Cubs will take on the White Sox in part 2 of the Crosstown Rivalry, Cleveland hosts Cincinnati in the Battle of Ohio, the Mets take on the Yankees in the Bronx, the Giants head to Oakland for the Battle of the Bay Area and the Dodgers and Angels play in the Freeway Series. On Saturday, Fox will carry the Mets-Yankees and Cubs-White Sox.
The PGA Tour heads to Michigan for the Buick Open. Golf Channel and CBS combine for the coverage. Before the Buick Open, there’s the CVS Caremark Charity Classic in my native Rhode Island which will have U.S. Open runner-up Rocco Mediate in the field. Golf Channel will pick up coverage on Monday and Tuesday.
The USGA holds the U.S. Women’s Open in Edina, MN. ESPN and NBC have the coverage starting Thursday.
NASCAR heads to the New Hampshire International Speedway for the Lenox Industrial Tools 301. TNT has the race Sunday at 1 p.m.
The NBA Draft is this Thursday on ESPN at 7 p.m.
And that’s a look at the Week Ahead.