Tennis Channel has extended the contract of Jim Courier to include analyst's duties at Wimbledon and the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, Calif. The multiyear agreement expands upon Courier's role as full-time lead men's U.S. Open analyst, begun in 2012, and comes in time for Tennis Channel's sixth year of coverage in London via the nightly Wimbledon Primetime, set for June 24-July 7.
Courier, a tennis Hall of Famer who currently captains the U.S. Davis Cup squad, will offer his insight as part of a Wimbledon Primetime team that includes fellow Hall of Famer Martina Navratilova, sportscast veteran Bill Macatee and on-point fan-favorite Mary Carillo. Former players Lindsay Davenport and Justin Gimelstob also will return in 2013, joined this year by former player Rennae Stubbs and frequent Tennis Channel contributor Jon Wertheim of Sports Illustrated. Macatee, Navratilova and Gimelstob have been part of Tennis Channel's on-air team at every Grand Slam telecast in network history.
"I've enjoyed working with Tennis Channel at the U.S. Open the past few years and am pleased to get the opportunity to join them for other important events," said Courier. "Wimbledon holds a very special place in the landscape of our sport and I look forward to being there to cover it alongside the entire Tennis Channel team."
Courier is widely regarded as one of tennis' all-time greats and a key contributor to the sport's heightened American popularity during his era (1988-2000). His resume includes four major singles championships, 23 singles titles overall, two Davis Cup crowns and time as the World No. 1-ranked singles player. He has had successful runs on the Champions Tour senior circuit since his retirement and has appeared on television as an analyst for NBC, USA Network and Channel 7 Australia. Courier was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2005.
In its second year of a 12-year agreement with the All England Lawn and Tennis Club, Tennis Channel's coverage of the sport's oldest major will again feature the largest on-site studio in prestigious event in tennis (and one of the most honored championships in all of sports), Wimbledon Primetime features the stars of the day as the tournament progresses, with headline makers visiting Macatee and others for interviews and in-depth conversation. These studio segments are interwoven with encore match play, highlights, Wimbledon features like Wertheim's daily "Unstrung" reports and analysis such as Carillo's "Fleet Street Beat" panels with British media, allowing viewers to stay versed in everything that takes place each day of the competition. This year Wimbledon Primetime will begin with a special, live segment that is new to the program in 2013. Carillo, Courier and Wertheim will break down the day with free-form, high-level analysis from the set, before Macatee commences with the show.
Tennis Channel's coverage starts with the first day of play Monday, June 24, and continues nightly through the final weekend. Wimbledon Primetime typically runs from 5:00 p.m. ET each afternoon until 8:30 p.m. This first edition will be followed immediately by a second, entirely new three-and-a-half-hour show from 8:30 p.m.-midnight. Exceptions to this schedule come on the weekends. On the middle Sunday, June 30, an annual day without any matches, Wimbledon Primetime will focus on the best of week one, and air one edition from 7:00 p.m.-11:00 p.m. ET. The following weekend, Saturday, July 6, and Sunday, July 7, also will feature single editions from 7:00 p.m.-11:00 p.m. ET each night, as the tournament concludes and champions are crowned.
Tennis Channel will run encore editions of Wimbledon Primetime throughout the late night and early morning until 7:00 a.m. ET, on the eve of the following day's play. Nightly encores usually will begin at 12:00 a.m., with 11:00 a.m. starts on altered-schedule evenings. The network plans close to 90 hours of first-run Wimbledon Primetime coverage during the two-week tournament, with late-night encores pushing the overall number of hours to more than 180.