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Sports Facts – Tennis
Did you know…
Former tennis star Bjorn Borg – Europe’s most successful tennis player – is as beloved in Sweden as a baseball icon in the United States. Thanks to Bjorn Borg, Sweden won the Davis Cup for the first time in 1975. The former champion of the game is a fan of Elvis Presley’s music…
Australia’s Evonne Goolagong became the first Aboriginal player to win a world championship (1971 French Open). Like Jim Thorpe (American football, sports, baseball / Olympic gold medalist, 1912) and Cathy Freeman (World 400m gold medalist in 1997), he is one of the greatest Aboriginal athletes of all time. Evonne has won 65 world titles. In the 1970s, she was named “Best Female Athlete” by the Associated Press.
In 1970, Margaret Smith Court (Australia) became the first woman to win the Grand Slam (Wimbledon, US, Australian and French Open Tours). In the 1960s, he once revealed: “I had left behind many years of youth, leaving parties with my friends at home.
Czechoslovakia -now the Czech Republic- won the Davis Cup in 1980. Finally, Czechoslovakia defeated Italy 4-1. This European country became the first socialist country to win the Davis Cup.
Manuel Santana became the first Spaniard to win Wimbledon (1966).
Chris Evert (USA) and Olga Morozova (USSR / Russia) won the women’s tennis championship at the French Open in 1974. Morozova was the first female tennis player from the Soviet Union.
The United States has won 32 Davis Cup titles: 1900, 1902, 1913, 1920, 1921, 1922, 1923, 1924, 1925, 1926, 1937, 1938, 1946, 1946, 194, 194, 194, 194, 194, 1944 , 194, 194, 194. 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1990, 1992, 1995, 2007.
In September 1975, Martina Navratilova – one of the most famous soccer players in the world in the 20th century – requested political protection in the United States. Fred Barman (Martina’s manager) said: “A year ago, she was in prison. Czechoslovakia is a prison. She’s like a little kid going to Disneyland. She wants to do this, she wants to do that. Maybe she’s out of her plan now. It’s time to get down to brass tacks. This is not another tennis player. This is another Billie Jean King”.
American tennis player, Jennifer Capriati, won the women’s singles competition at the 25th Olympiad in Barcelona (Spain). Amazingly, he lived in Spain in the late 70s. At just 16 years old, he was the youngest athlete to win an Olympic title.
Arthur Ashe, who was one of the greatest tennis players, became the second African-American to win the Wimbledon championship (1975). For many years, he served as the US Goodwill Ambassador to Africa. In the 1980s and 1990s, Arthur also gave his life in the fight against the AIDS epidemic.
Tennis is one of the most popular sports in Sweden. In the past century, three Swedish players have won 24 international titles:
-Bjorn Borg won six French Open titles (1974, 1975, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981), five Wimbledon titles (1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980).
-Mats Wilander won one US Open title (1988), three French Open titles (1982, 1985, 1988), three Australian Open titles (1983, 1984, 1988).
-Stefan Edberg won two Australian Open titles (1985 & 1987), two Wimbledon titles (1988 & 1990), two US Open titles (1991 & 1992).
Ilie Nastase was one of Romania’s greatest athletes in the 20th century. In the early 1970s, David Gray, a journalist, wrote about him: “Nastephobia is one of the most preoccupying things in the World Championship Tennis Professional and United States Davis Cup team”.
Name: Ilie Nastase
Sports career: 1969-1981
Languages: Romanian & English
Coach: Constantin Chivaru
1969 Davis Cup- second place
1970 Wimbledon – second place: mixed (with Rosemary Casals)
1970 Italian Championship – 1st place: singles
1970 French Open- first place: twice (with Ion Tiriac)
1971 Davis Cup- second place
1971 French Open- second place: singles
1972 Wimbledon – first place: mixed (with Rosemary Casals)
1972 Wimbledon-2 places: singles
1972 US Open-1st place: singles
1973 Wimbledon-1st place: doubles (with Jimmy Connors)
1973 French Open-1st place: singles
1974 Xerox Tournament- first place: singles
1975 USOpen- 1st place: twice (with Jimmy Connors)
1975 American Airlines- second place: single
1975 Louisville Tournament- second place: singles
1975 Canada Open- second place: singles
1975 Hillton Head- first place: singles
1975 Masters- 1st place: singles
1976 Wimbledon- second place: singles
1976 Altamira Cup- second place: singles
1976 International Tournament- first place: singles
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