On the trail blazed by Bunny Austin

Esquire, August 1935: “White duck shorts, introduced by Bunny Austin, have been seen in increasing numbers at important tennis tournaments over the past two seasons. Without the famous little Englishman’s sponsorship, it is doubtful that the fashion would have gone very far, but you may wear the outfit shown at left without qualm for its correctness in this usually tradition-bound sport.

The shirt was originally developed for squash, but has been borrowed for tennis. The shoes are the new blue canvas sneakers that have been taken up by many well-known professionals. The blue flannel blazer may be worn at the courts, and with white or grey flannels for general country usage.

The other and more typical tennis costume consists of a white light-weight wool polo shirt with short sleeves, worn with white flannel trousers, white sneakers and (a recent revival) the heavy white cable-stitch sweater.”

OK, I was at Wimbledon this week and every player was basically dressed like the gentleman on the left: T-shirt, shorts, white socks and trainers. Except, hang on, the T-shirts at Wimbledon usually had colllars and the trainers were white. Standards today are so much higher than they were in the 1930s. Bunch of ruffians back then. Blue canvas indeed.