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Tennis-Fans get inked for lasting impressions of Wimbledon

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By Christian Radnedge

LONDON (Reuters) – Giant tennis balls, towels and umbrellas are the usual kind of souvenirs many take away from Wimbledon – but this year, some will be going home from the Championships with a more permanent memento.

A local tattoo studio has taken the opportunity of its proximity to the All England Club by offering walk-in appointments throughout the two weeks of the tournament, having heavily advertised on social media in the build-up.

Those getting inked will not even have to worry about missing any play as screens inside the studio will be showing the action from the tournament.

“We’ve had loads of people from all over, I had someone from China messaged me saying they wanted a Wimbledon tattoo, as in the tennis rackets,” Wimbledon Tattoo Studio co-owner Jack McGoldrick told Reuters at the All England Club.

“We had someone from America that wanted a Wimbledon theme tattoo, a tennis ball saying SW19 in it. We said yeah, we’ll do a discount on anything that’s tennis related, because obviously it promotes the shop and because we’re round the corner from Wimbledon.”

The studio, opened last year, has seen a huge rise in bookings since pitching to those coming to see the likes of Novak Djokovic and Iga Swiatek play on the famous grass lawns.

“We’re probably up 300 to 400% in terms of messages every day… Where we’d get five, six messages a day inquiring about tattoos, I probably get about 50 to 100 people a day messaging.

“A lot of them are ‘Can I get a Wimbledon tattoo, can I get something that’s London (related)’, because a lot of people are coming from outside of England and they’re staying locally, so they want to get something to remind them of their stay.”

There have been no outlandish requests yet, but with one week of the major left, there is still time for someone to ask for something like a depiction of record eight-times men’s champion Roger Federer on their back.

“Hopefully, someone gets a Tim Henman – that’d be ideal,” McGoldrick added, while sitting on the bank of grass at Wimbledon known as “Henman Hill” in honour of the former British player.

(Reporting by Christian Radnedge, editing by Ed Osmond)

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