46. Doris Hart
GS titles won: A- S-1949; D- 1949, 50; M- 1949, 50; F- S- 1950, 52; D- 1948, 50-53; M- 1951-53; W- S-1951; D- 1947, 51-53; M- 1951-55; U- S- 1954, 55; D- 1951-54; M- 1951-55
Was the first player to complete the triple career slam; winning singles, doubles, and mixed titles at each major to complete the set. Also became the only player to win a triple crown at each individual slam, doing so in Australia in 1949, at the French in 1952, at Wimbledon in 1951, and at the US in 1954. Used precision groundstrokes and anticipation to compensate for slowness afoot. Defeated Maureen Connolly in the final of the 1953 Italian Championships by changing spins, speeds, and angles. Nearly repeated the feat at Wimbledon.
Did you know-- Hart walked with a limp. A childhood knee injury was misdiagnosed, resulting in serious infection. Her leg was nearly amputated.
47. Gertrude Augusta "Gussy" Moran
GS titles won: none
A fairly good player in her time, she is, however, best remembered for wearing lace-trimmed panties at the 1949 Wimbledon Championships. A creation of famed designer Ted Tinling, he tacked on some lace around the legs of the panties almost as an afterthought. They thought the outfit looked a bit too plain, and since color was forbidden, he added the lace so it wouldn't be boring. It certainly proved to be anything but. In a monumental overreaction, Tinling was dismissed from his Wimbledon post, and accused of everything up to attempting to bring about the downfall of civilization. Never before had "unmentionables" gotten so much mention.
Did you know: Gussy's tanned complexion was due to being part Native-American.
48. Shirley Fry
GS titles won: A- S-1957; D-1957; F- S-1951; D- 1950-53; W- S-1956; D- 1951-53; M-1956; U- S-1956; D- 1951-54
Proof of timing being everything, Hart won 4 slam singles titles, winning exactly one of each. She was a personal nemesis for Althea Gibson before Gibson put the final improvements on her game and became the top player in the world. Fry was the last player to defeat Gibson in singles at a slam. She started her career as a counterpuncher, but developed an all-court game as a result of her doubles. Fry was a contradictory player in that she had a weak serve, but, reportedly, the best overhead women's tennis had seen to that point. Was only the 3rd woman to win the career slam. Her promise to retire after the 1957 Australian Championships was not taken seriously at first, as she had made previous "retirements", but this was for good.
Did you know-- Fry's final GS event, the 1957 Australian Championships, were the first to be televised in that country.
49. Maureen Connolly
GS titles won: A- S-1953; D-1953; F- S- 1953, 54; D-1954; M-1954; W- S- 1952-54; U- S- 1951-53
First woman to win the grand slam, calendar or otherwise, in 1953. Won the last 9 slam singles events she competed in. (And not, contrary to some erroneous reports, every slam she played.) It was at the 1953 Australian Championships where she met Nell and Harry Hopman. Harry became her coach and trainer, while Nell became a chaperone/mentor who brought out her softer side. She was a baseliner with power on both sides, and had tremendous intensity. Her lone weakness was the volley, which very few could exploit in singles. Already one of the all-time greats, her career was tragically cut short due to injury suffered while horseback riding. "Little Mo" also died very young, passing away about a decade and a half after her career ended.
Did you know-- Connolly was naturally left-handed, and was taught to play tennis right-handed, like Margaret Court, Ken Rosewall, and Kimiko Date.
50. Eleanor "Teach" Tennant
Tennant coached such successful players as Alice Marble, Bobby Riggs, Pauline Betz, and her most famous charge, Maureen Connolly. Tennant was vehemently opposed to Connolly's habit of horseback riding, which wound up prematurely ending her career. Tennant was a fine player in her own right, forming an unbeatable doubles partnership with Marion Zinderstein in 1920. Unfortunately, the USLTA wouldn't allow them to play together at the US Nationals. She retired from playing when she got married, but returned as a coach after her divorce.
Did you know-- Tennant was credited with designing the first "lawn tennis dress".
Last edited by Brian Stewart; Nov 10th, 2004 at 03:15 PM.