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Reporters on the Job

Short Tennis Season : Britain during the time of Wimbledon goes "mad" for tennis, says correspondent Mark Rice-Oxley. "It's on TV solid for two weeks in June. You can't book a tennis court during that time. Everyone's talking about it," he says. Every year, Mark's wife is among those who stand in line for hours on end to get in to the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club (see story). She went last week with her mom.

But after Sunday, he says, tennis will disappear from the radar of most Brits. "Your average sports fan moves on to cricket. Even my wife, who will wait for six hours and stand in one of the most impressive thunderstorms, will lose interest. When it comes to the US Open, there's no interest here. There's nothing further from my mind," he says. "Perhaps that's why we can never produce any tennis stars of our own."

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Your Fingerprints Again: The only thing more predictable in Iran than the pro-American sentiment on the street (see story), says staff writer Scott Peterson, is the fingerprinting at the airport. Just as Iranians and Iranian-born Americans are fingerprinted when they enter the US, the opposite is true: US journalists arriving are told to sit down and wait until immigration police are free to capture their fingerprints.

Scott has been through twice in the past month (adding to the pile of identical sets of prints authorities must have for him. This time, "they were quite happy to just lay out the ink, and let me do it myself," says Scott. The routine never changes: individual finger tips in certain boxes (marked out in Farsi), then thumbs, and then all fingers on each hand, to prove they go together. "There is another benefit to the official hands-off attitude," says Scott. "It means only one of us gets covered with ink."

David Clark Scott
World editor


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