Here's when Wimbledon starts where you live — and how you can watch it live online

Alan Dawson
Roger Federer

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  • The 2018 Wimbledon Championships is scheduled to begin on Monday, July 2.
  • The men's final is set to take place on Sunday, July 15.
  • The two-week tournament will feature all the biggest names in tennis including clay king Rafa Nadal, grass master Roger Federer, and women's great Serena Williams.
  • Wimbledon will be broadcast on ESPN and ESPN2 in the US, and on BBC in the UK.

 

One of the biggest tennis events of the year, the 2018 Wimbledon Championships, is here.

That's right — Wimbledon, one of the big four tournaments in the tennis calendar, starts today. It brings together the finest players in the sport, produces some of the most compelling match-ups, and is contested at the prestigious All England Club in London — the same venue it has been held at since 1877.

If you don't know when it starts or how you can watch each match live online, fear not — Business Insider has your back.

When does Wimbledon start?

The tournament begins on Monday, July 2. 

The official Wimbledon schedule indicates that men's and women's first round matches will commence from 11.30 a.m. BST (6.30 a.m. ET) on the outside courts, and 1.30 p.m. BST (8.30 a.m. ET) on Centre Court and No.1 Court throughout the first week of the tournament.

The draw for the men's singles, women's singles, doubles, and mixed doubles was announced on Friday and there are many familiar faces vying for the coveted Wimbledon trophy.

Defending champion Roger Federer faces Dusan Lajovic on Monday, while Rafa Nadal takes on Dudi Sela on Tuesday. 

Women's world number one Simona Halep plays Natalia Vikhlyantseva in the opening round on Tuesday, while returning great Serena Williams begins her 2018 Wimbledon campaign against Arantxa Rus the day before, on Monday.

The competition winds to a close with the women's final on Saturday, July 14 and the men's on Sunday, July 15.

Why should I watch?

Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal

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The rivalry between clay king Rafa Nadal and grass master Roger Federer is amongst the most gripping in all of sport, greater perhaps than the competition between NBA greats Steph Curry and LeBron James and soccer stars Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

Federer, who won the 2018 Australian Open, decided to skip the clay season so he could be as fit and as fresh as possible for Wimbledon. Will the gamble pay off? Nadal, for one, wasn't too happy about Federer's decision and even accused the Swiss of avoiding having to face him on clay.

As Federer is the top seed and Nadal is ranked second, the pair will not face each other until the final — but there are no guarantees they will make it that far. The competition is open and Novak Djokovic, Marin Cilic, and Milos Raonic could all make a sustained run in the tournament. Then there are outside picks like Alexander Zverev and Nick Kyrgios, a player who Federer himself hopes to avoid.

Serena Williams

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The women's bracket is equally as interesting.

Muguruza, last year's winner, is one of three favourites to go all the way in this year's championships, but she might have her work cut out having to fend off Serena Williams.

Williams only competed in nine WTA matches in 2017, winning eight and losing just once. She swashbuckled her way through all her challengers at the 2017 Australian Open, even while eight weeks pregnant, but took the rest of the year off to give birth to her daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr.

Williams is three WTA events into her 2018 comeback. She was outfoxed by sister Venus Williams at the Indian Wells Masters in March and stunned by Naomi Osaka at the Miami Open, but performed well up until her withdrawal at the Round of 16 stage of the French Open.

Wimbledon may well be where tennis fans witness Williams return to her best. After all, she already feels like a "warrior princess" from Wakanda, the fictitious country in hit movie "Black Panther."

How can I watch live?

How to watch Wimbledon 2018 live online

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For audiences in the US, the ESPN network will stream all of the matches so you can watch online. We will publish links when these become available. Tournament highlights will be broadcast on ESPN and ESPN2. You will also be able to watch Wimbledon on Hulu Live, SlingTV, and DirecTV Now.

Audiences in the UK will be able to watch live on BBC TV, BBC iPlayer, and BBC Red Button. Live matches will be broadcast across each BBC channel, as well as on BBC Radio 5 Live.

BBC also announced that all centre court matches will be available to watch online in ultra HD — and you can stream these events via the broadcaster's iPlayer app.

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