Wimbledon crowd gives standing ovation to Oxford vaccine developer

28 June 2021, 20:51 | Updated: 29 June 2021, 10:53

Dame Sarah Gilbert receives a standing ovation
Dame Sarah Gilbert receives a standing ovation. Picture: Wimbledon

By Patrick Grafton-Green

Medical professionals who helped develop the coronavirus vaccine were given a standing ovation ahead of today's first match on Wimbledon’s Centre Court.

Guests of the Royal Box on Monday included Dame Sarah Gilbert, who co-designed the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, and Sir Andrew Pollard, head of the Oxford Vaccine Group.

Hannah Ingram-Moore, daughter of veteran fundraiser Captain Sir Tom Moore who raised over £32 million for the NHS, was also a guest.

Sir Tom's name was greeted with cheers and a round of applause and Ms Ingram-Moore smiled and waved.

Organisers have issued hundreds of free tickets to key workers and other "inspirational individuals" to say thank you for their "important work" during the pandemic.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted: “An inspiring moment at Centre Court today as spectators thanked those who have contributed so much in our fight against COVID-19.

“We owe a huge debt of gratitude to those who have saved lives and helped us on the road back to normality.”