Wimbledon: Activists plan protest against 'stressful' white dress code

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Activists are planning to protest against the all-white dress code at Wimbledon, which they claim hinders female tennis players.

According to The Telegraph, members of the Address the Dress Code campaign will wear custom-made skorts with a red underlayer.

This has been inspired by French star Tatiana Golovin, who defied Wimbledon regulations in 2007 by wearing a red underlayer during her first round victory against Hsieh Su-wei.

The protest will take place outside the main gates of the All England Lawn Tennis Club on Saturday, during the women’s final between Ons Jabeur and Elena Rybakina.

Address the Dress code has been launched following complaints by female players that the mandatory all-white attire at Wimbledon makes it hard to compete while on their periods.

British tennis star Alicia Barnett opened up about the situation recently, telling PA she was “a bit stressed” about being on her period while competing in the Wimbledon pre-qualifying.

British tennis player Alicia Barnett

‘I do think some traditions could be changed,” she said. ‘I, for one, am a massive advocate for women’s rights and I think having this discussion is just amazing, that people are now talking about it.

‘Personally, I love the tradition of all-whites and I think we will handle it pretty well. I think being on your period on the tour is hard enough, but to wear whites as well isn’t easy.

“But girls can handle it. We’re pretty tough when it comes down to it.”

Rio 2016 Olympic champion Monica Puig was another to discuss menstrual cycles in tennis, highlighting the issue of Wimbledon’s all-white dress code on Twitter in May.

“Definitely something that affects female athletes!” she wrote. “Finally bringing it to everyone’s attention! Not to mention the mental stress of having to wear all white at Wimbledon and praying not to have your period during those two weeks.”

Address the Dress Code member Gabriella Holmes suggested a solution to the The Telegraph – allowing female players to wear Wimbledon’s official colours underneath white skirts.

“These archaic rules were written years ago by men and they’ve gotten stricter and stricter over the years,” Holmes said. “It’s about time they were rewritten with menstruation in mind.

“We’re not asking for drastic changes. Maybe the Wimbledon Board can sit down and make a couple of amendments that consider the fact that women are competing on their period and it’s adding to their pressure when they’re performing at this level.”

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