Wimbledon 2024: A Reimagined Experience on ESPN

With the 2024 Wimbledon Championships well underway and contenders coming into focus, it’s time to check in on all the new offerings from ESPN that have made this broadcast more engaging than ever before.

From new talent like John Isner joining ESPN veteran Chris McKendry to a reimagined broadcast center — not to mention the thrills and surprises on the court — here’s all the exciting updates audiences can look out for as they watch Wimbledon on ESPN platforms, leading up to the final rounds this weekend.

Emerging Storylines

Wimbledon 2024 has been a rollercoaster of surprises and upsets already, with the races for the championships far from decided.

On the women’s side, defending champion Marketa Vondrousova and the world No. 1 and No. 2 ranked Iga Świątek and Coco Gauff were knocked out in the early rounds of the tournament, leaving the door wide open for new and emerging stars to take the lead on hoisting the Venus Rosewater Dish.

Six of the last seven women’s single’s champions at Wimbledon have been first-time winners of the event, and “we’ll see if that trend continues or not,” Isner, ESPN Wimbledon commentator, noted.

Jasmine Paolini

On the men’s side, Carlos Alcaraz is still competing to retain his status as Wimbledon champ. Last year, Alcaraz took the title from Novak Djokovic, winner of the prior four Wimbledon Championships.

Djokovic — who has seven Wimbledon Final singles wins over all — is playing through a recent knee surgery. “How is that gonna hold up throughout the course of the tournament” is an open question, according to Isner.

The grass courts of Wimbledon will present challenges to many, including Alcaraz, who is still fairly inexperienced on grass.

Taylor Fritz
Established Veteran, Fresh Perspective

This year, ESPN’s stalwart Grand Slam Tennis host McKendry — who has been calling tennis matches and hosting SportsCenter for nearly three decades — is joined by retired tennis pro Isner.

At Wimbledon, Isner is already famous for competing in the two longest tennis matches in Grand Slam history — winning the longest one ever, in 2010, over Nicolas Mahut.

ESPN Wimbledon commentator John Isner

Isner retired from professional tennis last year and is ready to relay his fresh and unique insights to audiences watching at home.

“He’s just come off the tour,” Marco Alfandary, ESPN producer, explained. “He’s got wins over many of the top players who are still playing today, and he sees things in their games that really make for great TV.”

McKendry agrees that Isner’s recent experience makes for an extra level of acuity about the tournament, noting that “the players we’re talking about, we can study their stats, we can study their numbers, their history, but to have somebody who has faced them is really a special addition.”

“It’s my first time doing it, but working with pros — especially like Chris, who’s been doing this for so, so long — helps me along the way,” Isner said.

Reimagined Broadcast Center

ESPN’s Wimbledon presence in London this year doesn’t just include new faces; the broadcast team has also been hard at work reimagining the broadcast center.

In just 100 days, the production, production operations, and studio directing teams completely redesigned their broadcast center at Wimbledon, expanding Studio 3 to nearly 900-square-feet, complete with a 34 x 6 ft. window that offers an unobstructed view of Court 18.

There is now a three-person desk for the main broadcast, a separate interview area, an interactive touchscreen, and a “mega wall” video display.

Marti Hanzlik, the coordinating director, noted that the broadcast will be enhanced due to the new view of Court 18, “the large LED screen displaying multiple court action, and the interactive touchscreen allowing talent to share their unique perspectives on the play.”

“We are thrilled to unveil the redesigned studios and enhance fans’ viewing experience of The Championships,” Chris Calcinari, SVP of Production Operations, said. “Behind the scenes, the new 1080p HDR control rooms will allow for improved quality and a more seamless, integrated production workflow, enabling valuable insights for fans throughout the tournament.”