Raonic attempts to explain why Wimbledon's grasscourts are slower

Raonic attempts to explain why Wimbledon's grasscourts are slower

They keep the grass a bit longer and it's softer, so obviously that's going to slow down a ball in its own right," said Raonic.

LONDON—Milos Raonic is among the players who find the grass courts have slowed down at Wimbledon, saying that it seems to be a deliberate effort to slow down play.

The 28-year-old Canadian has noticed a large drop during the previous couple of years.

"From the first years I have played here, I think it's made that gradual decline in speed of the court," he said. "And I don't think it plays any faster than any of the other Slams that's for sure.

According to Raonic, that is heavily influenced by the way the grass is kept. 

"I haven't played on the main courts but I think because they allow players to practice on the side courts...," he said. "They keep the grass a bit longer and it's softer, so obviously that's going to slow down a ball in its own right.

"From the little I understand, it's a grass that's meant to grow sort of as an 'x' shape so that it goes against the ball coming at it. It doesn't sort of bend that way. That's supposed to slow it down, as well.

"I'm sure it's an intent, because as you see it, the tennis that's played on grass has changed significantly. And it's not because of athleticism or anything. It's because the grass has allowed for that. And you see that with the list of champions."

But the big-serving Raonic says players like him are still effective on the surface, noting that he, Marin Cilic and Kevin Anderson have all been recent finalists at the All England Club.

"I think this does a lot of good things for a person that plays aggressive and goes for it," he said. "You know, big servers can still have benefits on it, especially the first week when it's harder to move. Later, it's tough because it gets pretty sticky on the baseline. It's no different than moving on a clay court.

"You see guys that are comfortable sliding on the grass, as well, the more athletic guys. And then it just sort of plays like any other surface."

The 17th-ranked Raonic is playing Guido Pella on Monday for a spot in the quarterfinals.