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Rollo
May 10th, 2011, 08:58 PM
The obituary of Jean Walker-Smith (nee Bridger)

From the Daily Telegraph
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/obituaries/7466494/Lives-Remembered.html

Jean Walker-Smith

http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/01598/jean-walker-smith_1598638f.jpg
Jean Walker-Smith





February 23, aged 85. One of Britain's foremost postwar tennis players, playing in tournaments all over the world and reaching the quarter-finals of the Ladies' singles at Wimbledon in 1949, 1951 and in 1952 (when she was seeded six). Educated at Roedean, she worked in an armaments factory during the Second World War. First appeared in the singles at Wimbledon in 1947, when she lost in the first round. Always wore a white ribbon in her hair on court, and represented Great Britain in the Wightman Cup in 1951 and 1952. With Jean Quertier, won the Ladies' doubles at the Italian Championships in Rome in 1950, defeating Betty Hilton and Kay Tuckey 1-6, 6-3, 6-2. The following year she reached the quarter-finals of the Ladies' doubles at Wimbledon. Continued to play tennis when she was in her eighties.

chris whiteside
May 11th, 2011, 05:49 PM
Thanks for posting this, Rollo.

It may have been in the main paper but as it wouldn't be a name I was over familiar with I could have passed it - I normally only read the Obituaries of people I instantly recognise.

According to Lance Tingay she was world ranked #10 in 1949, #5 in 1951 and #8 in 1952.

I wonder if this is the same person as Jean Bostock who played Wightman Cup in the years after WWII and was ranked #7 in 1947 and #6 in 1948?

Rollo
May 11th, 2011, 10:37 PM
I wonder if this is the same person as Jean Bostock who played Wightman Cup in the years after WWII and was ranked #7 in 1947 and #6 in 1948?

Jean Bostock (nee Nicholls) was a different player. Walker-Smith acheived more, but Bostock was the one British player most pundits thought would be the "real deal" until World War Two destroyed her chances.

It is impossible to know how much the war changed tennis history, but one can't deny it's huge impact on British tennis. Basic food staples like eggs and meat were rationed well into the 1950s.

A whole generation was basically lost.