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Wimbledon Won’t Move to Avoid Clash With 2018 World Cup Bid

The Wimbledon Championships won’t be moved to avoid a possible clash with England’s bid to stage the 2018 soccer World Cup, an All England Club spokesman said.

An evaluation report into the England 2018 bid released last week by FIFA had pointed out a clash between the tennis Grand Slam event and the soccer tournament.

“It is a FIFA requirement that no other major sporting event is hosted in a host city during the event period and the fact that the Wimbledon tennis championships take place in London during late June/early July could have an impact on the public attention given to the FIFA World Cup,” soccer’s world governing body said in the report.

“We haven’t been approached,” by the England bid organizers, Wimbledon spokesman Johnny Perkins said in an interview at tennis’s ATP World Tour Finals at the O2 arena in east London. “Even if there had been an approach, we can’t just move it,” he added. The tennis year runs from January until November and features 62 men’s events and 53 women’s tournaments..

In the experience of Wimbledon organizers, having two major sports events at the same time can have a positive effect on both, Perkins said.

“When England hosted Euro96, it was fantastic,” Perkins said. “There was a huge mutually supportive sports atmosphere.”

The Wimbledon Championships will be held June 20 through July 3 next year.

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