First service for BBC... as it airs Wimbledon singles finals in 3D (and welcomes back Serena)
By LIZ THOMAS
Last updated at 1:11 PM on 8th June 2011
It has been almost a year since she played a competitive tennis match.
But Serena Williams has announced she will defend her Wimbledon title despite having been sidelined for much of the past 12 months by injuries and illness.
And if she reaches the final, viewers will for the first time see the match in 3D - as part of the BBC’s plans to mark the 125th anniversary of the tournament.
It is the first time the corporation will broadcast a programme in 3D.
Comeback: If Serena Williams makes it to this year's Wimbledon final, her match will be screened in 3D
Miss Williams is now ranked 25th and faces a tough challenge to win back her Wimbledon title and reclaim her position as women’s world number one.
The 29-year-old has not played since securing her 13th Grand Slam singles title at the event last year.
She said: ‘I’m so excited to be healthy enough to compete again. These past twelve months have been extremely tough and character building.
'I have so much to be grateful for.
‘I’m thankful to my family, friends, and fans for all of their support. Serena’s back.’
Miss Williams cut her foot on a shard of broken glass in a German restaurant one week after the tournament and required surgery.
Since then she has been beset by injuries.
She has instead focused on her fashion line but plans for her comeback to tennis were delayed after she sprained her foot.
Then in February, she required emergency surgery to remove a blood clot, further delaying her return to the game.
Miss Williams will play at the Eastbourne tournament, which is often regarded as a warm-up for Wimbledon, later this month.
She will then play at the UK’s most prestigious grass court event – and may even face her sister Venus, 31, who has also been plagued by injuries this year.
If they reach the final then viewers, for the first time, will be able to see the match in 3D.
Champions: Serena Williams and Rafael Nadal won the Wimbledon singles events in 2010. The finals this year will be screened at selected cinemas
The BBC will air the Men’s and Ladies’ Finals of the 2011 Wimbledon Championships in the format via the BBC’s HD Channel.
The matches will take place on the first weekend of July and the corporation is even organising a special 3D screening at its Television Centre headquarters in west London.
The finals will also be shown at selected cinemas, which is what the BBC did during the Six Nations Rugby Tournament and a special edition of Strictly Come Dancing for Children in Need.
But this is the first time the BBC will broadcast a programme in 3D into people’ s homes – although viewers will need a 3D-ready television to be able to watch it in the format.
The HD Channel is available on Freeview.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2000683/Wimbledon-2011-singles-finals-aired-3D-BBC.html#ixzz1OgjCi3XS