When it comes to the sports section of the newspaper, we’re fair-weather readers: grab us with a juicy headline or a story related to one of the few sports we follow and we’ll read the whole thing; otherwise, we’re skipping right to Arts. Yesterday we were drawn in by a doozy of a Wimbledon infographic on the front page of the New York Times sports section. Floating over the above-the-fold headline, “Two More Seeds Fall, Clearing Way for Williamses,” was a graphic depiction of the tournament’s early round knockouts, featuring an info-studded strip of photos of all ten top-seeded women players.
For those who had failed to advance to the quarterfinals, the tiny photos were faded and showed faces contorted in anguish, while those remaining (seeds five through seven: Elena Dementieva and the sisters Williams) were grinning in saturated shots. More info was added below each photo, where the player’s name and seed was topped by a series of boxes that represented how far she had progressed and where applicable, noting the player who had beaten her. Sure, there was a key explaining the box scheme and pointing out that for the first time since 1927, none of the four top-seeded women had advanced to the quarters, but the smart, eye-catching graphic spoke for itself. Click here for the full graphic.