TV viewers prioritising World Cup over Wimbledon

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Wimbledon chiefs insisted again Monday that the men´s final will start at its traditional time despite clashing with a potential England World Cup triumph but will have no objection if the Centre Court crowd want to take sneak peeks of the action from Moscow on their phones.

"It's not unheard of for there to be a ripple of applause or a shout when something special happens in a football tournament, and I'm sure everybody will understand if it does".

But after Centre Court was left two-thirds empty during England's quarter-final match against Sweden last week, the ban has been negotiated and lifted.

The Centre Court showpiece is now slated for 2pm GMT on Sunday, meaning it would be highly likely to clash with the World Cup final, which will also feature one of France or Belgium, who contest the other last-four tie, kicking off at 4pm.

Those who stuck around seemed to be more interested in following the action in Russian Federation on their electronic devices than watching the tennis match taking place in front of them.

"We are a sold-out event and there's massive interest", Richard Lewis, chief executive of the All England Tennis Club, told the BBC.

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"Saturday was a fantastic day at the championships".

"We didn't have one single complaint of anybody here feeling that the football interfered with their enjoyment of Wimbledon", he said.

Federer, 36, could be playing for a ninth All England Club title on Sunday at the same time as England contest the final of the world's most widely viewed sporting event.

He added: "If you are not disturbing anybody and people aren't being disturbed, which they weren't this last Saturday and I'm sure they won't be on Wednesday and hopefully the same thing will apply on Sunday, then it's a different issue".

In a concession to the World Cup mania that's sweeping England now that its national team has reached the semifinals for the first time in 28 years, Wimbledon is loosening its ban on the use of mobile phones in the stands.

"They'll hear every point: 'Wow, love-15, 15-30'".

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