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Old May 23rd, 2002, 11:44 AM   #1
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Unhappy Tennis players who have died

28 year old Austrian Nike Ninaus (22 Feb 1974) died yesterday at breast cancer.
She played only one major tournament in 1996 in Maria Lankowitz/Austria lost to Maja Zivec-Skulj 06 16

Are there other players who have died?
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Old May 23rd, 2002, 11:46 AM   #2
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I take it you mean players who played in the last 10 years?

I don't know of any more
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Old May 23rd, 2002, 11:55 AM   #3
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What a morbid thread

ATP player Menno Oosting died in a car crash last year.
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Old May 23rd, 2002, 04:01 PM   #4
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Morbid thread indeed....

No I dont know of any, but there have been some serious illnesses that most of us know about, so no use repeating them.

I hadnt heard of her, but that is very sad indeed for someone so young
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Old May 24th, 2002, 11:37 AM   #5
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Isn´t former Canadian player Helen Kelesi suffering by cancer?
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Old May 24th, 2002, 11:40 AM   #6
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helen kelesi - suffering from cancer? I truly hope not. She's had a some nasty experience with recurring, benign brain tumours over the last 4-6 years, but I hadn't heard anything for a while. I hope no news is good news.

good luck Helen
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Old May 24th, 2002, 11:52 AM   #7
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Helen Kelesi was forced to retire because of cancer I believe. I know at least that she beat it once; the last I heard from her was when she was a commentator for the Canadian Open in either 99 or 2000. Hope she's doing well.
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Old May 24th, 2002, 01:33 PM   #8
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Karen Krantzcke, an Australian player of some note, died in 1977 while competing in a tournament (in Florida, I believe). It was a small tournament won by Billi Jean King if I remember correctly, and Krantzcke either won or lost the doubles final, then went out for a run and sufferred cardiac arrest while running.

Maureen Connelly, the great U.S. champion from the 1950s and arguably the best of all time, died of cancer at a very early age, although she was off the tour by then. In fact, her tennis career was ended by a horseriding accident.

Andrea Whitmore Buchanan, a young African-American player, was shot to death in the late 1970s while still playing on the tour. Buchanan had achieved some success on the Avon Futures tour and, I believe, even won a few matches on the main tour and in Grand Slams. She was good friends with BJK, who was devastated by the slaying.

He wasn't a tennis player, but the husband of Elena Pampoulova Wagner (a native Bulgarian who moved to Germany when she married) died while Wagner was still playing tennis.

Same for Scott Draper's wife, Tracy, who died a couple of years ago when Scott was playing the best tennis of his career, had won the Queens tournament and was ranked well inside the top 40 -- maybe higher.

Can't remember any other deaths on either tour. There was the case of Marc Rosset, the Swiss player, who at the last minute backed out of taking a Swiss Air flight home from the U.S. Open; the plane crashed. It was the first time in his career that Rosset had never left town on the day of a Grand Slam loss.

Butch Walts, a strong, hard-serving American player in the late 1970s/early 1980s, had his career curtailed by testicular cancer. He recovered and became a born-again Christian.
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Old May 24th, 2002, 02:01 PM   #9
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Karen Krantzcke - the tour annual sportsmanship award is named after her! Nice touch by the WTA!
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Old May 24th, 2002, 02:17 PM   #10
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German player Michael Westphal.

He was a Davis-Cup-hero in 1985 but after that his career went downhill.
He started a come-back but then had a mysterious virus-infection (it was probably AIDS). They never really said what it was.
He died in the early 90's.

Interesting note: He was married or at least had a relationship with Jessica Stockmann, who later became the wife of Michael Stich (but they are divorced now).
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Old May 24th, 2002, 05:31 PM   #11
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Karen Krantzcke, an Australian player of some note, died in 1977 while competing in a tournament (in Florida, I believe). It was a small tournament won by Billi Jean King if I remember correctly, and Krantzcke either won or lost the doubles final, then went out for a run and sufferred cardiac arrest while running.
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Old May 24th, 2002, 05:51 PM   #12
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everybody dies, but there are different ways for to die. and Rafael Osuna "el pelón" had maybe the worst

GRAND SLAM RECORD

U.S. Singles 1963
Doubles 1962
Doubles finalist 1961, 63


Wimbledon Doubles 1960, 1963

TOURNAMENT RECORD (ex: Davis Cup, Fed Cup, Olympics)

Davis Cup Team Member 1958-59


Intercollegiate Singles 1962
Doubles 1961-63

Mexico's greatest player, Rafael Herrera Osuna, died tragically in an air crash near Monterey, June 6, 1969--shortly after one of his brightest performances. He had spearheaded Mexico's lone Davis Cup triumph over Australia, 3-2, in Mexico City by winning both his singles (the exciting fifth-match clincher over Bill Bowrey, 6-2, 3-6, 8-6, 6-3) as well as the doubles with Vicente Zarazua over John Alexander and Phil Dent. Ironically it was not only his last match, but the last appearance in the Australian captain's chair of the man whose side he defeated, legendary Harry Hopman.
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Old May 24th, 2002, 11:16 PM   #13
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Let us not forget Vitas Gueralitis who sadly passed away at quite a young age.

The great Arthur Ash too.

What a sad thread.
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Old May 26th, 2002, 12:13 AM   #14
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It should not be considered such a morbid or sad thread. Luckily, we don't hear about too many tennis tragedies resulting in death and at least the players mentioned don't have to be forgotten.

Two pretty good collegiate players passed away before they had a chance to make any dent on tour. There was Xenia Anastiadou of Greece and one of the O'Reilly Triplets (can't remember which one) that both died as a result of auto accidents
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Old May 26th, 2002, 12:38 AM   #15
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at this thread
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