THE Wimbledon championships end today with the men's singles final - and grumbles from tennis buffs that this year's tournament has not been a classic one. But aside from the complaints of a few unhappy purists, nothing can dampen Hongkong's growing enthusiasm for the sport. Maybe it's the link to chic high fashion. Maybe it's the exclusivety. But more likely, because it is the favoured way for the rich and famous to work off the tensions of a day of wheeler-dealing, it is the connections that can be made. Until recently, there were far more private courts to serve the privileged few than there were for the public. With around half of Hongkong's 250 courts located in private clubs, next to houses or in residential developments, the game is heavily weighted towards the upper end of society. And for the seriously powerful, tennis has a peculiar edge over golf - a game now mushrooming to the extent that just about any junior manager is willing to get a second mortgage for a club membership: the exertion needed for tennis means there is littletime for small talk on politics or business. That comes later over lemonade by the pool or a beer in the bar. So much more civilised. Governor Chris Patten, Chief Secretary Sir David Ford - who is also president of the Hongkong Tennis Patrons' Association - and Financial Secretary Hamish Macleod lead by example. This trio of Government heavyweights are keen players, and have their own courts. Jardine's chief executive Nigel Rich and deputy managing director Rodney Michell are among those fortunate enough to have houses with tennis courts in the grounds. Tycoon Cecil Chao also enjoys the same privilege at his Pokfulam home, Villa Cecil - although its chief use seems to be as a landing pad for his helicopter. Perhaps the territory's best-known amateur player is septuagenarian tycoon Henry Fok Ying-tung, one of a clutch of veterans who use the Chinese Recreation Club (CRC) courts in Causeway Bay, along with casino tycoon Stanley Ho and perhaps Hongkong's most accomplished lady player Ling Yuen-yuen. But when it comes to a cut-throat approach to the game, women leave men behind in the changing rooms. One coach commented: ''These ladies have men with well-paying jobs so they do not need to work. ''They want to win, it's very important. And if you don't help them it can be the biggest mistake of your life if you're a tennis pro in Hongkong.'' HAMISH MACLEOD Financial Secretary PLAYS on private tennis court at his home on The Peak. Plays mainly with friends, including people within the Government. The financial secretary uses tennis as a means of relaxation, but also as an opportunity to meet people from different circles. Good points: Putting spin on the ball. Worst feature: Unknown, although his wife Fionna said there was plenty of room for improvement in many areas of his game - but tactfully declined to specify what they were. Appearance: Loves to wear the latest tennis gear and looks very trendy on court. Court manners: Well behaved, but he can be disconcertingly enthusiastic. RAIMONDO CHIODI Importer PLAYS at Aberdeen Marina Club, The Jockey Club or at the Hilton Hotel. Plays with friends or coaches. Good points: Fast on his feet and good at volleying. Worst feature: Backhand strokes. Appearance: Only wears whites. Court manners: Latin temperament comes to play on the court. Is known to be loud and rude and liable to cursing in Italian. Indulges in unrestrained gamesmanship - will attack opponents verbally as shot are being played. Very emotional player and by his own admission is a bad loser. NIGEL RICH Taipan PLAYS four or five times a week on his own court at his house in Shek O. Plays with David Davies, friends and colleagues. Very occasionally plays at The Tennis Club. Good points: Very steady player. Consistent. Patient. Good all-rounder. Worst feature: Unknown. Appearance: Wears casual clothes on his home court. Court manners: Impeccable. But rarely loses, so temper has notbeen tested too often. PETER WOO Director PLAYS at the Pacific Club in Kowloon and at The Tennis Club. Plays with David Davies. Does not play competitively, prefers to spar with friends and business associates. Good points: Baseline play and volleying; accomplished all-rounder. Worst feature: Inconsistent. Appearance: Always whites. Well-groomed and nevera hair out of place. Court manners: A gentleman to the last tie-break. DAVID DAVIES Director PLAYS at the Ladies Recreation Club or at The Tennis Club. Plays with aspiring tennis players from his office. Also takes part in the Corporate Tennis League. Partnered Sir David Ford in the anniversary of the Ladies Recreation Club. Also plays with Nigel Rich. Good points: Strong and fast serve. Worst feature: Appalling backhand. Appearance: Sticks to the regulations of the LRC and wears only whites. Court manners: Of Wimbledon standard - very gentlemanly. Claims he has never had a tantrum on court. Is known to lighten up the game with his good humour. LING YUEN-YUEN PE Instructor HAS held many titles and is a former women's singles champion of the Colony Hardcourt Tennis Championships. Plays at The Chinese Recreation Club with other club members and her husband. She was coached by her father who was a Davis Cup player for China. Now plays only for social reasons. For her age, 40-something, is considered one of the best female players in Hongkong. Good points: Good net player. Worst feature: Weak forehand. Appearance: Very presentable. Court manners: Good manners and sportsmanship - has not inherited her father's court manners -he was allegedly a bad loser. RAYMOND KWOK Director PLAYS every week at The Tennis Club with coach Hans Franklin as well as friends and colleagues. Good points: Baseline, forehand and backhand. Worst feature: Speed around court. Appearance: Always white. Court manners: Loves to win although he remains philosophical when loosing. CHRIS PATTEN Governor PLAYS twice a week at Government House and at The Tennis Club at the World Trade Centre when it rains. Often turns out with wife, Lavender, who is also said to be a good player, as well as Wharf head Peter Woo and Jardine's chief executive Nigel Rich. Good points: A quick learner with a good eye and ballistic skills. Competent all-rounder. Worst feature: Somewhat sloppy approach at the net. Appearance: Casual. Wears T-shirts and tracksuit if cold, but sticks to traditional white. Court manners: Very jovial. If he misses a ball he feels he should have hit a self-deprecating comment will follow. But takes the game seriously enough to have incurred a badly-pulled leg muscle after attempting a shot against his tennis coach Hans Franklin last November. Well-known for his intense facial expressions.