LONDON, Dec. 17 (UPI) -- Wimbledon will unveil its Center Court retractable roof on May 17, 2009, five weeks before the start of the championships on June 22.
The test will occur during an exhibition that could feature Tim Henman, England's former top-ranked men's tennis player, who retired after the 2008 season.
The roof's construction started in 2006 and was designed to limit interruptions at the rain-plagued grand slam tournament in London.
"The key thing for the new roof is the atmospherics and humidity conditions," Ian Richie, the chief executive of the All-England Club, told the BBC this week. "We need to get 15,000 people inside to test the humidity. It's a roof over a grass court and it's not like a football or rugby pitch, we need it to be absolutely bone dry. We have to test the air conditioning and playing surface as well."
To accommodate more fans, Center Court has been expanded from 13,800 to 15,000.