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WIMBLEDON WATCH: 2 kings: Jack & Rod in Royal Box

Friday - 7/4/2014, 9:17am  ET

Former golfer Jack Nicklaus, rear left, and former tennis player Rod Laver, rear right, sit in the Royal Box on centre court prior to the men's singles semifinal match between Novak Djokovic of Serbia and Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria at the All England Lawn Tennis Championships in Wimbledon, London, Friday July 4, 2014. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)

LONDON (AP) -- Oh, the Grand Slam and major victories they could rattle off: The Royal Box had two kings of their sports sitting side by side on Friday watching the men's semifinals -- Jack Nicklaus and Rod Laver.

Nicklaus, the winner of a record 18 golf majors, and Laver, who has 11 Grand Slam titles and is the only man to twice win all four majors in the same year, chatted before the match began.

Also in the box were Nicklaus' wife, Barbara, actors Bradley Cooper and Jude Law, Oracle software CEO Larry Ellison, golfer Justin Rose, and 1999 singles champion Lindsay Davenport.

Sitting in Grigor Dimitrov's player box was his girlfriend Maria Sharapova. A loser in the fourth round, Sharapova looked fashionable in a blue top and sunglasses as she watched Dimitrov play Novak Djokovic.

-- By Dennis Passa -- http://twitter.com/DennisPassa

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INCOGNITO BECKER: Boris Becker knows his way around Wimbledon and the All England Club. Three singles championships and four runner-up finishes help.

Eschewing the suit and tie that befits a club member, the 46-year-old Becker blended in with the crowd more as he ambled around Centre Court on Friday morning a few hours before the men's semifinals.

In a T-shirt, sleeveless sweater vest, tracksuit pants and running shoes topped off by a baseball cap, he looked any one of the dozens of trainers and coaches around the ground. Which these days, in maintaining his links with the game that gave him and the tennis world so much, is precisely what he is, as the coach of Novak Djokovic.

-- By Dennis Passa -- http://twitter.com/DennisPassa

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BERRY BERRY HOPEFUL: Jordanne Whiley of Britain is wearing strawberry dangling earrings that she expects will bring her good fortune in the wheelchair competition at Wimbledon.

The 22-year-old Whiley and partner, Yui Kamiji ofJapan, are the top seeds in the women's doubles.

They won their semifinal 6-0, 6-2 on Friday over Katharina Kruger of Germany and Sharon Walraven of the Netherlands.

"Every year my earrings come out for Wimbledon," Whiley said. "They're my lucky earrings. They weren't so lucky last year but I'm hoping that they're lucky this year."

This is the second consecutive year she's competing with Kamiji, who is the top-ranked singles wheelchair player in the world.

"I love Wimbledon and it's my favorite tournament of the year," said Whiley, who suffers from brittle bone disease.

In the final, they will play either second-seeded Jiske Griffioen and Aniek Van Koot of the Netherlands or Sabine Ellerbrock of Germany and Lucy Shuker of Britain.

-- By Sandra Harwitt -- http://twitter.com/TennisGrapevine

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Wimbledon Watch follows tennis' grass-court Grand Slam tournament in London as seen by journalists from The Associated Press. It will be updated throughout the day.


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.