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Yesterday 07:21 AM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

Originally Posted by preacherfan View Post
Wow! That's how tennis was meant to be played. Evert's passing shots are by far the most deadly the game has ever known. I am amazed by the precision. Especially the two-hander. Great play by Wade. Court looked overwhelmed by Chrissie. Watching Evonne is like watching a master artist paint.
No great in our sport was ever so dependent on returns, passes and lobs for her success as Evert. When she first arrived, 3 of four majors was played on fast grass, and throughout her years, indoor carpet was the most popular surface for tournaments in Europe and the States. Serve and volley, chip and charge were the dominant tactics and had been for two generations. The last number one to play baseline was Connolly in the early 1950s.

As a newbie she passed and beat a prime Court, King, Wade, Goolagong, Melville, and Casals. Mid career she passed and beat Turnbull, Navratilova, Mandlikova, Sukova, Shriver, Kohde Kilch Sukova, Jordan and Garrison.

My point is she had to do this against great and very fine net rushers round after round after round in tournament after tournament. She did not win a lot of points with her big serve. She did not charge forth on either serves or returns and only occasionally took the net away in rallies. She owes a huge percentage of her points through her 19 year career, to tactics and shots employed against someone coming to or standing at the net.

Yet it is Evert with the astonishing consistency records of her era. She has that 90% win/loss record on the pro tour and 88% win loss at majors.

Despite all those varied, agile accomplished, versatile and powerful net rushers attacking her serve, from 1971 through 1989, this clay court specialist reached the semifinals or better in 26 of 27 attempts in a major played on grass and 15 finals
Feb 2nd, 2016 05:27 AM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

Yes, Preacherfan... Court did look overwhelmed and outmatched against Evert. By the time this match was played in 1975, Court was past her best and simply no match for Evert who was clearly dictating the play.
Jan 31st, 2016 02:09 PM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

Had the pleasure of running into Chris during the Open a few times this year. She was exceptionally sweet.
Made a gay man very happy indeed!
Jan 31st, 2016 05:24 AM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

Originally Posted by Sam L View Post
Chris in the 70s, this is exactly how I want to play with a wood racquet:

Wow! That's how tennis was meant to be played. Evert's passing shots are by far the most deadly the game has ever known. I am amazed by the precision. Especially the two-hander. Great play by Wade. Court looked overwhelmed by Chrissie. Watching Evonne is like watching a master artist paint.
Jan 30th, 2016 01:40 AM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

A glam pic of Chris from 2008

Sep 22nd, 2015 01:11 PM
Sam L
Re: Chris Evert Thread

Chris in the 70s, this is exactly how I want to play with a wood racquet:

Aug 24th, 2015 01:15 AM
Jem What a great obituary! Thanks for sharing, Rollo.

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Aug 23rd, 2015 12:06 PM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

Jimmy Evert, father of tennis great Chris, passes away at 91

August 22, 2015

Chrissie Evert was dubbed the Ice Maiden because of her stoic, unemotional, almost robot-like demeanor on court as she surgically dismantled her opponents enroute to 18 Grand Slam tennis singles titles and a legendary Hall of Fame career.

But it was actually her father/coach Jimmy Evert, who hammered that into her and her four siblings when they turned 5 while teaching them tennis at what's now known as Jimmy Evert Tennis Center at Holiday Park in Fort Lauderdale.

In this 1997 photo, Chris Evert poses with her father Jimmy Evert on one of the courts at Evert Tennis Academy in west Boca Raton to commemorate Jimmy Evert's retirement as tennis director at Holiday Park.
(Taylor Jones)

On Friday evening, Chris, John, Drew, Clare and Jeanne all were at their father's bedside as he passed away from pneumonia at age 91 with the same grace he lived his life. Evert's wife of 63 years, Colette, was never more than a lob away from her soft-spoken, humble husband, an iconic figure in the rich history of tennis in South Florida.

"Dad always said he started us in tennis to keep us off the streets," Chris Evert said, chuckling Saturday afternoon. "He was a very private, humble person who was low-key and happy to stay in the background."

While Chris Evert's mother traveled the globe to keep tabs on her teenage phenom in the '70s, Mr. Evert took on the role of Mr. Mom, cooking meals, driving the children to school and to Holiday Park where he would give lessons from sunrise to sundown for 49 years as the director of tennis for Fort Lauderdale.

His tennis-teaching talents produced some high-profile results. Not only did he coach a passel of champions to the highest levels of play, his name will remain for posterity on the tennis courts where he dedicated those 49 years to the city. He is also among 15 people named on Fort Lauderdale's Walk of Fame.

"He put Fort Lauderdale on the map as far as tennis goes," said Patricia Zeiler, the executive director of the Fort Lauderdale Historical Society, who attended St. Thomas Aquinas High School with Chris and Jeanne Evert.

Holiday Park was the mecca of tennis in the '70s and at one point, seven of Mr. Evert's disciples played Wimbledon at the same time, including Chris Evert, Harold Solomon and Brian Gottfried. Mr. Evert also briefly coached three-time Grand Slam champion Jennifer Capriati, who grew up in Lauderhill.

Date: June 16, 1982
(Lou Toman / Sun Sentinel)

Former Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle oversaw the re-naming of the tennis courts in Mr. Evert's honor in 1997. It wasn't so much because of how the family hit the tennis big time, he explained.

"His daughter was famous, he was a great coach and he could have done anything with that, but he didn't want to do anything other than coach the kids in Fort Lauderdale," Naugle said, recalling his "amazing dedication."

"He was very proud of his daughter, but he was just a regular guy — a tennis coach in Holiday Park," Naugle added.

Mr. Evert came to Fort Lauderdale from Chicago, after playing tennis for Notre Dame. At that time, his parents had lived in the city for three years, so he got a job as the city's tennis supervisor. He started with four clay courts at South Side Park, now Florence Hardy Park.

Dr. Dan Arnold Jr., a pediatric dentist who served on the tennis center's advisory board with Mr. Evert, said the coach was in the right place at the right time, when tennis exploded. And Mr. Evert had just the right way of teaching it, he said.

"He was always so gentle and he had a nice way of telling you what to do without being intimidating or threatening — a positive for mostly everyone," he said.

Arnold's son is among the thousands of Fort Lauderdale residents who got the same guidance that led Chris Evert to her famous two-handed backhand.

"Thousands is a lot, but for the number of years he was there, he must have given thousands of people tennis lessons," Arnold said.

Date: June 16, 1982
(Lou Toman / Sun Sentinel)

Chris Evert recalled Saturday how his imprint on her remained: "So after I retire, I see he's watching Tennis Channel and he's laughing at John McEnroe's [histrionics], telling me he's his favorite player. I yelled, 'Dad, that's everything you taught me not to do!'

"He handled the parent-coach relationship very well and it can be difficult. He never got mad at me or my siblings when we lost, but he would be furious if we gave up or didn't try in practice."

John Evert and his sister have run the Evert Tennis Academy in Boca Raton for the past 18 years where they continue their father's legacy of turning children into tennis professionals, but more significantly, into productive, well-rounded citizens.

"Before we started the academy I was a sports agent and started hanging out with [Mr. Evert] more than because he retired [in 1997]," John Evert said. "Sometimes as an agent you have to compromise your integrity, but Dad was all about character. He made me realize what life was all about. He taught me that every kid is created equal and needed to be treated the same.

"Somehow he instinctively knew how to manage the parent-player relationship before all the books came out.''

Chris Evert said her dad would like to be remembered for his humility and integrity, as well as for his three loves: Family, tennis and his religious beliefs.
The Hall of Famer's tweet on Saturday said it all: "It's an honor and a blessing to have been your daughter. You will be in my heart forever. RIP Dad. … XO.''
Aug 23rd, 2015 02:18 AM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

I love the story about how Jimmy Evert, originally from the Midwest, once dated Jimmy Connors mother Gloria.

Think about the various scenarios and possibilities of that combo!

Mary Jo Fernandez was speaking of Mr Evert tonight. Unlike any tennis parent I can ever recall he actually shunned the limelight.
Aug 23rd, 2015 01:54 AM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

^ And Jimmy gave Chris probably her best ever advice - never show to your opponent how you are feeling. Whether she was match point down or match point up, you could never read how the match was going by just looking at her face.
Aug 23rd, 2015 01:50 AM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

Jimmy Evert was all class. The Evert children had two amazing parents in him and Colette.

RIP Mr Evert.
Aug 22nd, 2015 10:43 PM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

How sad. I believe he was the greatest coach of all time, because I consider Evert to be the most technically gifted and complete tennis player, man or woman, ever to have played the game. There was nothing she could not do with a tennis ball, whether it was landing a topspin lob on the baseline in a gale or her forehand dropshot winner which came like a bolt out of the blue and had already landed before you could react. That is before you get into her arsenal of sidespins, underspins, etc.
Aug 22nd, 2015 09:20 PM
Jem I made a thread in the General Forum but probably worth noting here that Chris's father, Jimmy, passed away last night. I saw her post about it on Facebook and there was a short article in the Fort Lauderdale newspaper. He really seemed like a humble man.

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Aug 11th, 2015 05:10 AM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

Originally Posted by JakeMan90-93 View Post
I think it was more of a technique thing, it was a more natural shot for her to hit, when her forehand was struck primarily flat/underspin, but when she began to hit over the ball it wasn't as intuitive, I think.
Actually I saw a lot of that shot well into the eighties with her graphite racket and it was plenty effective and controlled, especially against younger players, tall players or two handed players because the spin surprised them, stayed low, and their reach was compromised. You will see that sidespin DTL forehand induced several errors against Seles in the Open match and Evert also used it against Mary Jo Fernandez. It seemed less effective against veteran players who played a lot on grass and were used to underspin and its cousins or were expecting it from Evert. It did not seem cause as much trouble for Graf because her footwork was always sublime and she had the natural one-handed slice to return it.

I suspect Evert's coaches were encouraging the topspin DTL to rob time.
Aug 10th, 2015 08:35 PM
Re: Chris Evert Thread

Originally Posted by Mark43 View Post
That shot was a thing of beauty and so effective. Did it not come off as well with the graphite racquet?
I think it was more of a technique thing, it was a more natural shot for her to hit, when her forehand was struck primarily flat/underspin, but when she began to hit over the ball it wasn't as intuitive, I think.
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