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BAMMER, SYBILLE
Austria
Born 27 April 1980 in Linz, Austria
Height: 5' 9" (1.74 m)(5 ft 9 in)
Played: Left-handed (two-handed backhand)
Name pronounced: zi-BEE-luh Bam-er
Nickname: Bam-Bam
[Active 1995-2000 and 2002--2011]

2008 US Open quarterfinalist most famous in being one of the few mothers on tour.

Her mother Elisabeth introduced her to tennis at the age of 11.

From 1996 to 2000 Sybille was a low ranked player hovering in 200s. Then she became pregnant. Daughter Tina was born 28 July 2001. Bammer's boyfriend was engineer Christophe Gsthwendtner, who encouraged Sybille to return to the tour. He agreed to help raise Tina so Bammer could train.

Did motherhood somehow regenerate Bammer? It was only after Tina's birth that her 1st singles titles came-3 ITS titles in 2002 and 4 more in 2003.

Continuing an upward trajectory, Sybille's ranking was high enough by 2005 to get into grand slams and regular WTA events. She finished solidly within the world top 100 in both 2005 and 2006.

Bammer considers the peaks of her career her two WTA titles (Pattaya and Prague), her 2007 Indian Wells semifinal, her 2008 US Open quarterfinal and her 2-0 head-to-head record against Serena Williams. The highest ranking Bammer reached was No.19 in 2007.
Bammer's banner year came in 2007. She shocked Serena Williams in the quarters at Hobart. The next month in February she won the Pattaya Open. It was the 1st tour level singles title by a mother since Laura Gildemeister won a tour title in 1989. Her daughter Tina often was in the stands while mom played tennis. Bammer's other solid results in the year included a 4th round result at the US Open.

2008 saw continued success. The highlight came on hardcourts, her favorite surface. Seeded 29th at the US Open she upset #12 seed Marion Bartoli 7–6 0–6 6–4 in the 4th round. She was beaten by Jelena Dokic in the quarters.

Her last notable victory came in 2009. Meeting Serena Williams for only the 2nd time in Cincinnati, Bammer won 7-5 6-4. Sybille ended her career 2-0 vs Serena, one of the few women with a winning head to head over one of the greatest players of all time.

With diminishing results past the age of 30 Bammer retired in July of 2011. She was ranked #148 at the time.

Hard work and determination overcame technical limitations. More than anything Bammer had exceptional fitness.

Singles

Career record 363-338
Career titles 2 WTA, 9 ITF (WTA titles at Pattaya in 2007 and Prague in 2009)
Highest ranking No. 19 (17 December 2007)
Best result in a major: QF at 2008 US Open

Top 100 WTA Year End Rankings

2010: #70
2009: #55
2008: #26
2007: #21 (career high of #19 on 17 December)
2006: #53
2005: #79


Doubles

Career record 31–91
Career titles 0 WTA (1 ITF)
Highest ranking No. 236 (15 January 2007)





Sources:

2009 Official Guide to Professional Tennis. Page 67.

https://www.tennisforum.com/12-general-messages/312643-family-affair-welcome-life-sybille-bammer.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sybille_Bammer

https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sybille_Bammer

http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/players/player/profile.aspx?playerid=20007333

Sybille Bammer retires after losing in home Austria | Women's Tennis Blog

[Thanks to Rollo for this information]
 

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ELLIOT, Miss R.
Great Britain (Ceylon)
[Active from at least 1901-1905]

Lady champion of Ceylon in 1901,1902, 1903 and 1905.

Her name and the year (1906) suggest she may be the same Miss R. Elliott who played Wimbledon in 1906. This Miss R. Elliott lost to Winifred Longhurst 6-2 6-3 in the 2nd round after a 1st round bye.

http://www.wimbledon.com/en_GB/scores/draws/archive/pdfs/players/6ca01535-e60b-47f4-ab35-67f66ab26862_LS.pdf

http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=31882

[Thanks to Rollo for this information]
 

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ERRANI, SARA
Italy
Born 29 April 1987 in Bologna, Italy
Height: 5' 4 1/2" (1.64 m)
Plays: Righthanded with a two-handed backhand
[Active 2002-present]

2012 French singles finalist.

5 time Grand Slam doubles titlelist-Sara has been a key part of an Italian women's tennis renaissance. This includes helping Italy to 3 Federation Cup victories (2009, 2010, and 2013). With doubles partner Roberta Vinci she has won all 4 doubles slams at least once-a complete set. Errani and Vinci were the #1 doubles team in the world 3 years running-from 2012 to 2014.

Father, Giorgio, sells fruits and vegetables; mother, Fulvia, is a pharmacist; brother, Davide, is a soccer player ... Introduced to tennis at age 5 by father ... Favorite shot is forehand; favorite surface is clay ... Speaks Italian, Spanish and English ... Enjoys reading, movies, music (especially pop), following soccer and basketball and playing Monopoly, cards and video games ... Favorite event is Acapulco ... Admires David Ferrer-another player of short height.

"We always say that it's because we are friends outside the court," Errani said when asked about the secret behind their success. "We are like a big team, spending a lot of time all together with our families and our coaches. We are really a big team. -Errani on her success with doubles partner Roberta Vinci
Best on clay in singles, the petite Errani slowly moved from minor ITF events in her youth to the main tour. She received also no support at all from the Italian Tennis Federation, something she attributed to her small ("normal" in Errani's words) height and build. 2008 was her first year inside the top 50-with two lower level WTA titles at Palermo and Portoroz.

2012-A magical year


The year started off with a bang-as Errani reached her first slam quarterfinalin singles at the Australian Open. Spring saw 3 titles: at Acapulco, Barcelona and Budapest. Then came the bolt from the blue-a fabulous run to the French final at Roland Garros.

Her path to the last round included 3 wins over former French champs- Ana Ivanovic, Svetlana Kuznetsova, and Sam Stosur, plus victory over Angelique Kerber (her 1st win over a current top ten player). In the final Maria Sharpova burst the bubble and powered through her 6-3 6-2.

After the Shvedova debacle at Wimbledon (see below) a title at Palermo restored confidence. At the US Open Sara upset #6 seed Kerber in the 4th round and good friend Roberta Vinci in the quarterfinals. Serena Williams predictably overwhelmed her in the semis.

The year ended with her in the #6 spot-the best of her career.

Success in singles went with even greater doubles feats. Sara and doubles partner Roberta Vinci shone-with 2 Grand slam titles (French and US Opens) plus the final at the Australian Open.

Continued success, decline and a doping accusation

3 more doubles majors with Vinci came in 2013 and 2014. Their last major victory at Wimbledon in 2014 was particularly sweet, as it gave the pair a complete "set" of all 4 majors on their weakest surface.

Her 2013 French semi demonstrated that 2012 was no fluke. Indeed Errani maintained her top ten ranking at #7.

Quarterfinals in majors kept her in the top 20 for 2014 and 2015.

A decline in singles set in in 2016, a title at Dubai (her biggest ever) a highlight in an otherwise lackluster year.

As of 2017 her form is in a tailspin-the glory days a thing of the past. Adding to her woes was the revelation in August that Errani had failed a drug test in February. Banned for only 2 months by the ITF, the excuse offered up by the Italian was that she had eaten the substance by mistake in her mother’s tortellini.

This raised more than a few eyebrows in light of Maria Sharapova's 15 month ban and the fact that Errani was allowed to play for months after the failed test. The ITF cited her "unblemished record" as a factor in her short ban. This ignores the fact Sara was once a patient of Luis Garcia del Moral, notorious as the doctor of disgraced superstar Lance Armstrong. She cut her ties with the doctor after the Armstrong revelations late in 2012 saying "He was the best doctor in Valencia for everything, so I have been working with him of course. But now his name is not a good name."

Playing Style

Speedy Sara lacks the height and power to compete with the "big babes" such as Serena Williams or Maria Sharapova. This type of player often tees off on her serve, an Achilles heel for Sara, and can severely maul her on fast surfaces. Yaroslava Shvedova did this at Wimbledon in 2012-defeating Sara 6-0 6-4. The first set was a complete whitewash-24 points to nil against Errani. Grass is easily her least favorite surface, with Wimbledon the only slam where Errani never got to the quarterfinals in singles.

Errani compensates with the clever use of tactics-her serve percentage is one of highest on the WTA tour. She hits with a lot of topspin, using the loop and depth to buy time and maneuver foes into errors. Geoff Macdonald of the New York Times aptly summed up her game: "Errani is a deceptively aggressive player. She is fearless at stepping up into the court and ripping the cover off anything short. She excels at running her opponent from side to side then attacking with an inside-in forehand. Her footwork, honed from years of soccer and basketball as well as tennis, allows Errani to get into superb position for each shot." (07 June 2012).

Grand Slam Doubles titles (all with Roberta Vinci)

Australian Open W (2013, 2014)
French Open W (2012)
Wimbledon W (2014)
US Open W (2012)

Grand Slam Singles Quality Finishes (1 F, 2 SF, 4 QF)

Australian Open QF (2012)
French Open RU (2012);SF (2013); QF (2014, 2015)
Wimbledon
US Open SF (2012); QF (2014)

Career Highlights:

SINGLES

Winner (9): 2016 - Dubai; 2015 - Rio de Janeiro; 2013 - Acapulco; 2012 - Acapulco, Barcelona, Budapest, Palermo; 2008 - Palermo, Portoroz.

Finalist (10): 2015 - Bucharest; 2014 - Paris [Indoors], Rome; 2013 - Paris [Indoors], Dubai, Palermo; 2012 - Roland Garros; 2011 - Pattaya City; 2009 - Palermo, Portoroz.

Highest ranking No. 5 (20 May 2013)

DOUBLES

Winner (25): 2015 - Auckland (w/Vinci); 2014 - Australian Open, Stuttgart, Madrid, Wimbledon, Montr‚al (all w/Vinci); 2013 - Australian Open, Paris [Indoors], Doha (all w/Vinci); 2012 - Monterrey, Acapulco, Barcelona, Madrid, Rome, Roland Garros, 's-Hertogenbosch, US Open (all w/Vinci); 2011 - Hobart, Pattaya City, Palermo (all w/Vinci); 2010 - Marbella, Barcelona (both w/Vinci), Palermo (w/Brianti); 2009 - 's-Hertogenbosch (w/Pennetta); 2008 - Palermo (w/Llagostera Vives).

Finalist (14): 2016 - Doha (w/Su rez Navarro); 2014 - Sydney, Rome, Roland Garros (all w/Vinci); 2013 - Sydney, Rome, Roland Garros (all w/Vinci); 2012 - Australian Open, Miami (both w/Vinci); 2011 - Marbella, Birmingham, New Haven (all w/Vinci); 2010 - Acapulco (w/Vinci), Moscow (w/Mart¡nez S nchez).

Highest ranking No. 1 (September 10, 2012)

2012 Roland Garros-the pinnacle of Errani's career









Year End WTA Singles Ranking

2016: 49
2015: 20
2014: 15 (#1 in doubles)
2013: 7 (#1 in doubles)
2012: 6 (#2 in doubles)
2011: 45
2010: 43
2009: 48
2008: 42
2007: 70
2006: 171
2005: 359
2004: 521

Sources:

Sara Errani | WTA Tennis

http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/players/player/profile.aspx?playerid=100013605

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sara_Errani

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sara_Errani_career_statistics

Wimbledon 2012: Yaroslava Shvedova claims 'golden set' as Sara Errani makes unwanted history - Telegraph

Home - Sara Errani [Her official site]

Italy's Sara Errani suspended for just two months after blaming mum's tortellini for failed drugs test

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/sport/tennis/a-disgraced-doctor-had-links-to-past-and-present-players/news-story/9e7ee70360d903ad74a4b9553ced5218

https://straightsets.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/09/06/errani-tries-to-distance-herself-from-barred-spanish-doctor/

http://www.tennis.com/pro-game/2012/11/players-shun-disgraced-doctor-del-moral/40123/


https://www.tennisforum.com/12-general-messages/1358121-sara-errani-vents-insta-not-liking-my-serve-write-wta-santa-i-am-tired-5.html
 

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FONSEKA, "COO_COO" (CHRISTOBEL FONSEKA)
Ceylon/Sri Lanka
Born circa 1932
Married Behram Jilla (died 13 October 2014)
[Active as early as 1955 to as late as 1961]

10 times winner of the Ceylonese Championships-1 in singles, 5 in doubles, and 4 in mixed doubles.


Christobel (Fonseka) Jilla came from a family of tennis players that included her father Lionel, her brother Douglas and her sister Doris, with whom Christobel won most, if not all, of her five women's doubles titles at the Ceylon Championships.

Her father Lionel Fonseka was a tennis administrator, this doubtless being the deciding factor in her taking up the sport. Her nickname was "Coo-Coo", pronounced "Cuckoo" like the bird.

Won the 1955 Ceylon Championships. In 1957 she was runnerup to Ranjani Jayasuriya in the same event by a score of 8-6 6-4.

Active as late as 1961, when she was a finalist in the mixed with her brother Douglas Fonseka.

Her husband's obituary mentions no children.

Sources:

https://www.tennisforum.com/59-blast-past/1047425-tournament-winners-event-2.html

BEHRAM JILLA

http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=100774

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lionel_de_Fonseka [her father]
 

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JAYASURIYA, RANJANI (Ranjani Eileen Weerarathna Jayasuriya
Sri Lanka
Born 10 November 1929
Never married
[Active 1948-1967]

4 Time Ceylonese singles champion (1957,1958,1959, and 1953) --15 titles in event overall, 2nd only to Doreen Sansoni (who has 19).
1955 All-India Hard Court Champion
1957 Malay Champion.

1962 silver medalist the Asian Games in singles
1966 bronze medalist at the Asian games in doubles with Wendy Whitham, aka Wendy Molligoda

A small, right-handed, nimble-footed and short haired female.


[From the article by Renata Silva]

The major victories in early career:

In 1948 I won the Ceylon Junior Championship while I was studying at Visakha Vidyalaya, where I joined after leaving Ladies’ College after the 2nd World War. I won the doubles title too with partner Cynthia Gunasekera. I remember winning a triple crown at Bandarawela, a very popular tournament that time.

On playing a double-handed backhand in times such stroke was rare:

I used to play against a wall most of the times during my practices. And that habit prompted me to play such a stroke. I remember my father buying my two sisters two racquets for Rs. 15 each. We all began at a cement court in our garden. That had been built by one Mr. Kanthawala, an Indian civil servant from Bombay. I was not to play at first. In fact I was picking balls for almost two years when my sisters used to play. But I didn’t mind.

On the coaches:

The legendary Doreen Sansoni was asked to come and coach the Visakha girls. She asked me to have the second ball in my left hand, the non-playing hand, so that I can avoid playing the backhand double-handed. I remember Doreen then forming a club with about 50 girls at Visakha as she created a great interest among schoolgirls when she was the coach.

Major international achievements:

In 1955, I won the All India Hard Court Championships beating Miss Sera Mody in the final. I played in most of the top tournaments that time in India including the India National Championships where I met their No. 2, Mrs. J. B. Singh in the first round itself. I couldn’t beat her. Then I played in the Bengali State Championships held on grass courts at Calcutta (now Kolkata). I performed well in that tournament. Out of all, my achievements in the two Asian Games are the most important. I received state honour recently for the medals which I won in those 1962 and 1966 Asian Games.

About tennis in Ceylon during your hay days:

Most of the tournaments were played in the up country. Then mainly due to the high cost the participants had to bear for travelling, the tournaments, including the Nationals, were brought down to Colombo. Bernard Pinto (renowned National champion) was an emerging junior during the very times I began. Colombo’s tennis was centred to the Garden Club and the Lawn Club, situated where the Vihara Maha Devi park is at present.

Miss Sheila Roberts and Miss Doreen Sansoni, who dominated the country’s tennis before me, and Miss Ranjani Jayasuriya... all were dedicated champions and remained misses right throughout.





Sources:

The Island

The Island

[Thanks to Rollo for this information]
 

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FOLTZ, SHAWN (Shawn Patricia Foltz)
United States
Born 21 December 1967, in Indianapolis, Indiana
Married Todd Emmons by 2003
[Active 1983-1986, 1988-1990]

A highly touted and attractive junior player, this marketing agent's dream from the early 1980s faced unexpected setbacks that derailed her upward arc. Her baseline game with a two-handed backhand was in the mold of Chris Evert.

Already a model, Foltz appeared in the film Spring Fever in 1982 with Carling Bassett.

Appeared in singles in 4 Grand Slams in 1984 and 1985. 1984 Japan Open finalist.
Highest singles ranking was 55 in April 1985 while she was still an amateur.

Foltz developed wrist problems in September 1986. Her life and tennis career changed course radically.

[From the Orlando Sentinel]

At the top of her game and with a promising pro career looming, Foltz was practicing when she felt a burning sensation in her wrist. Initially misdiagnosed as tendinitis, it was eventually identified as a congenital bone disorder that required surgery.

Foltz had been enrolled at Florida at the time, hoping to play a year or two before turning pro. But the injury dashed those plans, and she returned home to Indianapolis to have surgery just a month after arriving in Gainesville.
In the initial operation, doctors cut out a quarter-inch of the ulna, inserted a metal plate and secured it with five screws. Foltz is right-handed and the surgery was performed on her left wrist, but with her best shot a two-handed backhand, the prognosis could not have been worse.

Foltz enrolled at Indiana and in March of her freshman year, doctors operated again, shaving bone spurs and cleaning out loose cartilage.

Foltz remembers the exact date - May 14 - she walked out of her doctor's office after a follow-up exam. She remembers because it was three days after her parents told her they were separating. She remembers because it was the day her doctor told her she never would play tennis again.

''The whole focus of my life since I was 10 was to be a professional tennis player,'' Foltz said. ''My whole life was shattered.''

Studied at University of Indiana late 1980's. A six inch scar along her forearm did not prevent her from having a college tennis career. At one point she was ranked #1 in the US.

Foltz rejoined the tour in 1989 as a pro. Her 2nd stint on the tour was brief.

A married mother (daughter Hannah was born in 2002) and psychologist in 2003, she was living in New Mexico at that date. Shawn Foltz Emmons wrote her Phd. dissertation on eating disorders in women's tennis, using her own career as an example.

Husband Todd Emmons (married circa 1999) served in the US Air Force. As a result Foltz-Emmons has relocated several times.



Sources

1987 WTA Media Guide
Google

Isaacson, Melissa. "Indiana Player Gets 2nd Chance at Tennis:, Orlando Sentinel, 14 May 1989.
Indiana Player Gets 2nd Chance At Tennis - tribunedigital-orlandosentinel

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CsqI0_3XVOI [a 5 minute clip of Foltz and Carling Bassett from the film "Spring Fever"-includes tennis action]

Two Broken Wrists Can`t Break Shawn Foltz Spirit - tribunedigital-sunsentinel

Shawn Foltz et Micki Schillig - Le blog des archives du tennis feminin

http://www.tennisforum.com/59-blast-past/32703-courting-fame-does-anyone-remember-book.html [A thread on the book "Courting Fame"]

[Thanks to Rosamund for this information]
 

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CROWE, HEATHER
United States
Born 12 July 1961 in Topsfield, Massachusetts
Married Thomas "Ryan" Conner on 23 April 1994 in Tarrant, Texas
[Active 1982-1988]

Educated Indiana University 1980-82.
Active on WTA Tour most of the 1980's but only 2 appearances in Grand Slam singles were the 1982 US Open(reached the 3rd round losing to Zina Garrison) and 1983 US Open. Competed mostly in USTA tournaments.

Highest ranking was 101 in January 1983.

In October 2015, Bob Hewitt was ordered to pay her $1.2 million in a sexual abuse case stemming from 1976, when Hewitt was her coach. Heather was repeatedly assaulted by Hewitt, starting at the age of 15. Their relationship went on for more than 10 years.

A high school teacher after her 1988 retirement, Crowe decided to go public with her abuse in 2010. The mother of two daughters approaching their teens, Crowe-Connor's revelations started a cascade of charges against Hewitt, who faces jail for similar allegations in South Africa.

“He [Hewitt]told me I couldn’t tell anyone or he would be in big trouble,’’ said Conner, 50, a teacher at Reading Memorial High School. “He called it statutory rape and said he could go to prison.’

Heather in 2015




Sources:

1989 WTA Media Guide
Google
www.ancestry.co.uk for marriage details

http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/players/player/profile.aspx?PlayerID=20001701

https://www.bostonglobe.com/sports/2015/10/01/tennis-star-hewitt-ordered-pay-mass-woman-million-rape-case/RDEXJvUzi5KFsCcgVwlBhP/story.html

Conner: Tennis star 'got off easy' in rape conviction | Local News | newburyportnews.com

Heather Crowe Conner: No Closure From Bob Hewitt?s Rape Sentence Appeal Rejection | WGBH News [including at video interview]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=muFcu_2r808&t=329s [Heather speaks about how she was mainipulated by Hewitt]

http://archive.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2011/08/28/former_tennis_star_coach_bob_hewitt_accused_in_abuse_of_young_girls/?page=1

[Thanks to Rosamund for this information]
 

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GALPHIN, ELIZABETH
United States
Born 26 August 1968 in Annecy, France
[Active 1987-1989]

1989 living in Largo,Florida.
Played mainly on USTA circuit , but in only Grand Slam singles reached 2nd round of 1988 Australian Championships.
Highest singles ranking was 185 in May 1988.

Sources:

1989 WTA Media Guide
http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/players/player/profile.aspx?PlayerID=20002971

[Thanks to Rosamund for this information]
 

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FUCHS, JENNIFER
United States
Born 02 July 1967, in Mineola, New York
[Active 1982-1983, 1988-1993]

Attend UCLA for 2 years.

Played mostly on USTA circuit and played singles 1988 (lost to Catarina Lindquist) and 1989 (losing to Andrea Temesvari) Australian Open.
Highest singles ranking was 256 in January 1989.

Hit by speeding motorist when playing in Italy in 1988 and suffered serious shoulder injury which caused to retire after a number of operations. All of her tour level matches from 1990 to 1993 were in doubles only.


Has been working as tennis director at Oro Valley Community Centre (formerly the El Conquistador Country Club) Arizona since 1993.

Sources:

1990 WTA Media Guide
Google

http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/players/player/profile.aspx?PlayerID=20003129

[Thanks to Rosemund for this information]
 

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FORMAN, JANE
United States Born 21 January 1962 , Providence , Rhode Island.
[Active 1982-1988]

Majored in psychology at Clemson University.

Played mostly on USTA circuit reaching singles ranking of 145 in November 1985.

Most famous match was at Wimbledon in 1986 when having qualified as lucky loser she played Martina Navratilova in the 2nd round.
Retired in 1989 and founded her own tennis academy in Florida in 1990. In 2002 she founded her own Miami based sports management group.

Sources

1988 WTA Media Guide.
Google
http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/players/player/profile.aspx?PlayerID=20003060

[Thanks to Rosamund for this information]
 

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GOLDER, JAMIE
United States
Born 21 February 1962 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Married (1) Richard Albert Runco (died in 2012) at Broward, Florida on 20 July 1995.
Married (2) Art Metrano (actor/playwright/producer) by January 2013.
[Active 1983-1989]

Educated University of Miami. Pro February 1983.

Active in 7 Grand Slam singles from Wimbledon 1983 to Australia 1988 winning 2 matches.

In 1st round of French Championships 1984 was losing 0-5 to 4th seed Andrea Jaeger who then had problems with her shoulder. She then went on to win the 1st set 7-5 and then Jaeger retired from the match.

Highest singles ranking was 90 in December 1984 (from 1980 Media Guide). Per Binoxial it was at #73 in June 1984.

In March 2017 living in Aventura Florida



Sources:

1989 WTA Media Guide
Google
www.ancestry.co.uk is the sources for her 1st marriage.
Le blog des archives du tennis feminin - Blog sur les joueuses de tennis des années de 1919 aux années 2000

http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/players/player/profile.aspx?PlayerID=20003031

[Thanks to Binoxial and Rosamund for this information]
 

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SPEARS, ABIGAIL
United States
Born 12 July 1981 in San Diego, California
Height 1.75 m (5 ft 9 in)
Turned pro October 2000
Plays Right-handed (two-handed backhand)
[Active 1998-present]

2017 Australian Open Mixed doubles winner with Juan Sebastian Cabal of Colombia. In 2013 and 2014 Abigial reached the US Mixed finals with Santiago Gonzalez.

Abigail is especially proficient with volleys. A doubles specialist-she achieved her highest level of tour success with Raquel Kops-Jones. They won 4 titles together in 2012.

[WTA Mini-Bio]

Coached by Larry Willens ... Started playing at age 7 when tennis coach noticed her as she hit against a wall while parents played racquetball ... Dad is CL (computer analyst); mom's name was Margo (deceased); older sister, Ali, is married w/two children and living in Texas ... Favorites include movies Braveheart and Gladiator, actor Mel Gibson, musical groups Switchfoot and POD (prefers rock and pop) and Italian food ... Other sport interests are beach volleyball, surfing, mountain biking ... Also enjoys watching X-Games ... Relaxes by going to the beach (enjoys surfing), reading, watching movies ... Admires Graf for her athleticism and Seles for her sportsmanship.

Spears has announced she intends to retire at the end of 2017.

Final 8 Grand Slam Doubles results


Australian Open SF (2014); QF (2015)
Wimbledon SF (2015, 2016); QF (2012)
US Open QF (2008)

Doubles

Career titles 19 WTA, 21 ITF
Highest ranking # 10 (02 March2015)

Winner (19): 2017 - Doha (w/Srebotnik); 2016 - Stanford (w/Atawo); 2015 - Doha, Nottingham, Linz (all w/Atawo); 2014 - Birmingham, Cincinnati (both w/Atawo); 2013 - Stanford, Carlsbad (both w/Atawo); 2012 - Carlsbad, Seoul, Tokyo [Pan Pacific], Osaka (all w/Atawo); 2011 - Qu‚bec City (w/Atawo); 2009 - Oeiras (w/Atawo), Seoul (w/Y.Chan); 2005 - Cincinnati (w/Granville); 2004 - Vancouver (w/Mattek-Sands); 2003 - Auckland (w/Ashley).

Finalist (9): 2015 - Sydney (w/Atawo); 2014 - Dubai (w/Atawo); 2013 - Seoul (w/Atawo); 2012 - Brisbane, Doha (both w/Atawo); 2011 - Carlsbad (w/Atawo); 2009 - Birmingham (w/Atawo), Osaka (w/Scheepers); 2005 - Memphis (w/Granville).


Singles

Career titles 0 WTA, 8 ITF
Highest ranking # 66 (06 June 2005)

RU at Quebec City in 2004.

Cabal and Spears with the Australian Mixed Trophy



With Raquel Kops-Jones (now Atawo)





Sources:

Abigail Spears | WTA Tennis

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abigail_Spears

https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/tennis/2017/01/29/spears-cabal-win-mixed-doubles-continue-30s-theme-in-oz/97210448/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7i_fE-uPuMM [A fun video with Spears and Kops-Jones]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Qpa5a-1dQc [Highlights from 2017 Aussie Mixed final. Spears and Cabal are the pair in white clothes]
 

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LUCIC, MIRJANA (Mirjana Lučić)
Croatia
Born 09 March 1982 in Dortmund, Germany
Married Daniele Baroni on 15 November 2011
Plays:Right Handed (Double Handed Backhand)
[Active 1996-2006, 2007-present]

1998 Australian Open doubles champion (with Martina Hingis) most famous for her rapid rise as a teen, departure from the tour in an effort to escape a physically abusive father, and a Cinderella comeback after more than a decade in the wilderness.

Won the 1997 event at Bol, her 1st ever event as a pro at the tour level.

Her resurgence has set several records, among them longest gap between tour level titles by winning Quebec in 2014 (her previous tour title coming on 1998). Even more significant was the gap between semis at a major; the 2017 Australian Open semi coming 17 year after her first slam semi in 1999.

Currently plays as Lucic-Baroni.

[Her WTA mini-biography]

Began playing tennis at age 4 by following older sister Ana to practice ... Aggressive baseliner; favorite tournaments are Grand Slams (especially Wimbledon) ... Speaks Croatian, English ... Owns yellow labrador named Max ... Loves music, especially Michael Buble‚; also loves history books ... Favorite cities are Rome and Paris ("timeless beauty and architecture") ... Enjoys charity work ... Tennis player most admired is Steffi Graf ... Best tennis memory was reaching Wimbledon SFs in 1999 ... If weren't a tennis player, would have been an archaeologist (loves history) ... Enjoys cooking (has a cookbook in the making) ... Junior highlights included winning 1996 US Open and 1997 Australian Open (third player in Open Era to win two Grand Slam junior titles by age 14 - also Hingis and Capriati).


Grand Slam highlights

Singles: Wimbledon SF (1999); Australian SF (2017)

Doubles: 1998 Australian Open winner

Mixed Doubles: 1998 Wimbledon finalist

In 2000 at Wimbledon



Wedding photo with Daniele Baroni




Sources:

Mirjana Lucic-Baroni | WTA Tennis

http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/players/player/profile.aspx?PlayerID=20009551

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mirjana_Lučić-Baroni

http://www.tennisforum.com/1473-mirjana-lucic-baroni/426969-mirjana-lucic-photos-videos.html

[Thanks to Rollo for this information]
 

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CHRISTIAN, CAROL
United States
Born 09 October 1962 in San Bernardino, California.
[Active 1982-1989]

Pro 1982. Played mainly on the USTA circuit during the 1980's.

Played in 4 Grand slam singles in 1988 and 1989. Reached the 3rd round of 1988 Australian singles losing to quarter finalist Anne Minter.

Source 1988 WTA Media Guide.

[Thanks to Rosamund for this information]
 

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COPELAND, CARYN
United States
Born 14 March 1961 in Los Angeles, California
Married Stan Wilson
[Active 1979-1987]

Educated Stanford University

Played on tennis circuit during the 1980's. Only Grand Slam singles main draw was at 1987 Australian Open but played doubles in other Grand Slams.

Later a tennis coach.

In 1999 became a golf professional and twice played in the US Open golf. Together with Althea Gibson is the only woman to play in both the US golf Open and the US Tennis Open.

Quit as a golf pro. in 2010 and reinstated as an amateur has played in the US senior golf womens amateur.

Sources:

www.ancestry.co.uk
Google
http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/players/player/profile.aspx?PlayerID=20001726

http://www.usga.org/championships/2015/u-s--senior-women-s-amateur/articles/althea-and-her--wilson-brings-rare-sports-experience-to-senior-w.html

[Thanks to Rosamund for this information]
 

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MCCARTHY, SHANNAN
United States
Born 19 May 1970, in Athens Georgia.
Married Michael Gaudette 1998. Has 4 children including triplets.
[Active 1987-1997]

Educated University of Georgia.

Mainly active on futures tour late 1980's and the 1990's. Highest ranking was 153 in November 1992. In doubles her highest rank was #62 according to a podcast featuring her.

Only Grand Slam singles main draw was the 1992 US Open. She cites this as her most memorable moment in tennis.

A shoulder injury in 1997 forced her off the tour permanently. She met her future husband Mike that year while rehabbing the injury.

In 2010 was working at the Tennis Academy of the South, Atlanta, Georgia.



Sources:

1994 WTA Tour Media Guide.
georgiadogs website
http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/players/player/profile.aspx?PlayerID=20000472

https://twitter.com/glevineradio/status/657398963499237376 [A podcast where Shannan speaks about her tennis career]

[Thanks to Rosamund for this information]
 

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MIDDLETON, MELISSA
United States
Born 06 June 1982, in Houston,Texas.
Played: righthanded with two-handed backhand
[Active 1997-2002]

Started tennis at age 7. A junior champion, her only Grand slam main draw in singles was the 1999 US Championships.

Gave up pro tennis for law school.

Career High Singles Ranking: #270 (18 June 2001)

Career High Doubles Ranking #116 (25 February 2002)

Won 2 ITF doubles titles at Bradenton (2001) and Fullerton (2002)

Sources:

ITF website
Article in the Virginian Pilot 15th July 2007 entitled "Junior tennis titles do not serve as a predictor of pro success"
http://www.itftennis.com/procircuit/players/player/profile.aspx?PlayerID=35009522

[Thanks to Rosamund for this information]
 
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