Bournemouth, 1968. The Dawn of the Open Era - TennisForum.com
 
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 2018, 12:34 AM Thread Starter
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Bournemouth, 1968. The Dawn of the Open Era

Wimbledon has a nice clip about the first Open event at Bournemouth in 1968.


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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 2018, 01:38 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Bournemouth, 1968. The Dawn of the Open Era

Most of the top women-led by Ann Jones, boycotted the event due to the prize money disparity, an issue that is still relevant today.

The top seed was Virginia Wade. Wade was an independent contract player, straddling the line between amateur and pro. More than anything else Virginia didn't want the British LTA to ban her from Wimbledon. In April of 1968 the lines were THAT fuzzy.

Here's a photo of Wade from the event.



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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 2018, 01:46 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Bournemouth, 1968. The Dawn of the Open Era

A clip from Bournemouth.



We get brief views of Christine Truman, Virginia Wade, Angela Mortimer Barrett, and Ted Tinling.

April in England, even the south of England, is cold. Spectators wear coats or jackets while watching matches. Then there was the wind. Virginia Wade got faulted on a serve once despite never hitting the ball. She threw the ball upwards, the wind got a hold of it, and blew the ball behind the fence!

Crowds are usually thin early in the week (as in the video above), but by semis and finals the stands were full.


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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 2018, 10:44 AM
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Re: Bournemouth, 1968. The Dawn of the Open Era

The disparity of 70% to the men was really scandalous and insulting. If I had been a woman pro at that time I also should boycott all these tournaments.
I think some prestigous tournaments disappeared later because of this discrimination (right word? can't find the equivalent in English what I have in mind).

How would the women's tour look today without Billy Jean King fight loudly and annoying for improvements???

Last edited by Peter2003; Apr 25th, 2018 at 11:14 AM.
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