Sarah Gilbert, co-creator of AstraZeneca vaccine receives standing ovation at Wimbledon

Dame Sarah Gilbert, co-creator of the AstraZeneca vaccine receives standing ovation at Wimbledon

Sarah Gilbert

Women across the globe have led during the past 18 months, and if we needed another reminder of it, the centre court of Wimbledon proved it last night.

Dame Sarah Gilbert was reduced to tears when she was given a spontaneous standing ovation on the opening night of the tournament, sitting in the royal box, with spectators celebrating her remarkable contribution in developing the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine.

A mother of triplets as well as a Professor of Vaccinology at Oxford University, Gilbert is hailed as a hero in the UK. Unlike in Australia, where the AstraZeneca vaccine is widely regarded with wariness after its rare link to blood clots, most people in Britain perceive the vaccination as a lifesaver.

Much of the crowd would have already had their two jabs, enabling the country to regain some normality and open back up after months of strict restrictions.

Gilbert who is 58, designed the vaccine with Sir Andrew Pollard, and Clinical Biomanufacturing Facility Professor Cath Green. The trio is lauded for their quick efficiency, obtaining the smallest sample of the virus DNA in late January and commencing clinical trials two months after that.

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