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Rain wipes out play at Wimbledon again

SHARE Rain wipes out play at Wimbledon again

WIMBLEDON, England — With time to fill during two all-day rainouts that forced Wimbledon's third People's Sunday in 127 years, the BBC showed old matches from such rivalries as John McEnroe vs. Jimmy Connors, and Chris Evert vs. Martina Navratilova.

If, as planned, the All England Club has a roof in place over Centre Court in 2009, the network will be able to broadcast live tennis when the inevitable showers come.

And that means future generations probably won't get to see archived tapes of matches between two players who could be the sport's next all-time greats, two players whose contrasting styles and personalities appear to set the stage for a career-defining series of showdowns: Andy Roddick and Roger Federer.

As McEnroe, working for the BBC, put it: "A Roddick-Federer rivalry would be sweet for the men's game."

Neither Roddick nor Federer got a chance to reach Wimbledon's round of 16 Saturday. Off-and-on drizzles prevented any action on courts — other than the removal of tarps during breaks in rain, and the replacement of tarps when drops returned.

Play also was washed out entirely Wednesday.