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I must be a lot older than most people here because mine is a long time ago, Virginia Wade winning Wimbledon in 1977. It was a huge deal here in the U.K. as it was also the Queen’s silver jubilee year so a massive event.


I was already a bit "old" by then. Always liked Virginia. She played for NY Sets of World Team Tennis in the mid 70s and was coached by legendary Fred Stolle. At one time she came to NYC to play a tournament (likely was the USO) and she hired a friend of mine as practice partner. She was surprised at how strong and skilled he was despite being an amateur who was well into his 40s by then. Sadly, my friend who just could not stop playing died on the tennis court about 10 years later. Great guy, too.
 

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Yeah - all of these youngies talking about the 70s! :ROFLMAO:

... I know many of the New Zealand players, but I've also been lucky enough to meet several from overseas when they've played in Auckland. Long may that continue!
For the life of me, I just cannot recall any Kiwis on the tennis circuits back in the 60s/70. To me Kiwiland has always been the land of rugby, cricket, Americas Cup boating, and softball. Small country but one that has produced many great athletes. Lotsa good luck to those newbies on the tennis circuits.
 

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I'm older than the hills. So far as I recall, for me it started with ABC's Wide World of Sports showing taped coverage of Wimbledon in 1963 or 1964.


Now that I think about it, I was so inspired by the TV presentation that I asked my mom to enroll me in a youth tennis program. She tried to do so but when we entered the tennis facility they threw us out and threatened my mom with arrest for disorderly conduct. Even though it was NYC and was a city park, the tennis courts remained racially segregated and we Hispanics were kept away from them. Had my mother complained to the cops she would have been arrested so we decided that I should just stick to baseball and softball. Luckily, I excelled at both and later coached for several decades. A few years later around 1973 or 74 I tried to join the Paerdegat Racquet Club but it, too, let me know I wasn't welcomed. Now that it has moved its headquarters into the racially mixed Canarsie neighborhood, I wonder if it is finally integrated.
 

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For the life of me, I just cannot recall any Kiwis on the tennis circuits back in the 60s/70. To me Kiwiland has always been the land of rugby, cricket, Americas Cup boating, and softball. Small country but one that has produced many great athletes. Lotsa good luck to those newbies on the tennis circuits.
Our first real international star was Anthony (Tony) Wilding, who was generally acknowledged as the greatest player of his time, winning four consecutive Wimbledons (1910-13) and leading Australasia to win the Davis Cup four times. He was tragically killed in action in the First World War.


We didn't have anyone else of note until Ruia Morrison who, in 1957, became both the first New Zealand woman and the first Maori to play at Wimbledon, where she lost in the fourth round to Betty Pratt. She and fellow Kiwi Heather Robson lost in the third round of the doubles. In 1959 Morrison again lost in the fourth round, this time to eventual champion Maria Bueno, and again reached the third round of doubles.

After Morrison the best-known players would have been Onny Parun and Brian Fairlie, who were the mainstays of our Davis Cup team for what seemed like forever from the late 1960s, and then Chris Lewis, before Belinda Cordwell came onto the scene later in the 1980s. On the women's side you then have to wait until Marina Erakovic's first junior Grand Slam title in 2004 (US Open doubles with Krajicek) and her subsequent WTA career until injury ended that in 2017, and we're still waiting for another top player.

At least we still have top-class men's doubles players in Michael Venus, Ben McLachlan (though he now represents his mother's country of birth - Japan), Marcus Daniell and Artem Sitak. Again, though, we're struggling to find anyone decent in singles. Some of the younger ones do show a bit of promise, but that's not enough.
 

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Now that I think about it, I was so inspired by the TV presentation that I asked my mom to enroll me in a youth tennis program. She tried to do so but when we entered the tennis facility they threw us out and threatened my mom with arrest for disorderly conduct. Even though it was NYC and was a city park, the tennis courts remained racially segregated and we Hispanics were kept away from them. Had my mother complained to the cops she would have been arrested so we decided that I should just stick to baseball and softball. Luckily, I excelled at both and later coached for several decades. A few years later around 1973 or 74 I tried to join the Paerdegat Racquet Club but it, too, let me know I wasn't welcomed. Now that it has moved its headquarters into the racially mixed Canarsie neighborhood, I wonder if it is finally integrated.

Did you ever get to play tennis?
 

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Hopman cup final 95/96 when Switzerland played Croatia in the final.

Hingis and Rosset against Majoli and Ivanisevic.

Fell in love with martina straight away. So annoyed when Rosset punched the wall and they had to retire!!!!



Sent from my SM-G960F using Tapatalk
 

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My mother used to like watching Wimbledon and so we used to watch it as children on the black and white TV in the 1970s, especially the finals. The first matches I remember were the 1975 singles finals won by Billie Jean King and Arthur Ashe. The first women's final I remember watching in greater detail was Virginia Wade beating Betty Stove in 1977 and then I supported Martina Navratilova beating Chris Evert in 1978. I did not really start to focus on wider tennis until a few years later - 1983. I think the first non-Wimbledon finals I saw were Roland Garros in 1984, but the BBC coverage switched to racing or cricket right in the middle of the comeback of Lendl against McEnroe, typical of the tennis coverage in those days!! The US Open - I have strong memories of Hana Mandlikova's epic victory over Martina Navratilova in 1985, which broke the monopoly of Evert and Navratilova over the slams that had existed for the previous four years!
 

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1989 French Open final: ASV d. Graf - sensational win for the 17 yo and I was the same age, hooked for life
 

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1989 French Open final: ASV d. Graf - sensational win for the 17 yo and I was the same age, hooked for life
That was a great final - Arantxa became one of my faves as a direct result of this match. Tennis in the 80s was all about dominations - first Martina v Chris from 1982, then Steffi, so anyone but those three winning slams in that decade was a huge deal.
 

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They are showing classic Wimbledon matches on BBC to make up for the lack of live Wimbledon and so I am watching the 1978 women's final - Navratilova v Evert - right now!
 

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Did you ever get to play tennis?


Nope, never did. Luckily, in those days pro tennis was on TV virtually every week and I got to watch many, many matches.

While I did not get a chance to play the game, I was very busy playing baseball, softball, handball, paddle ball, running cross country, volleyball, and flag football. Eventually I became a coach and if I may be permitted the boast, had a fairly good amount of success as one. The game of baseball was especially good to me as I worked in field maintenance, free lance sports reporter, official scorer, have travelled to other states to watch the pro game, and gotten to know a few pro players. I wish tennis had been as good to me as baseball was but that's life fer ya.
 

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2004 USOpen , but i dont remember who, i just remember they mentioned Mauresmo and thinking she was from Iran, and Shinobu Asagoe, and thinking how cool there's a japanese there.

It was only because i went on vacations during 2004 Athens Olympic Games, i zapped into Eurosport and got interested in watching the games. Then sometime after, i came across tennis on Eurosport again.
 

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I can remember watching Arantxa Sanchez lose to Graf in that Wimbledon final where they had the mammoth game at 5 all. Then I never really followed tennis until I saw Hingis play Graf at the French Open final in 99. I was 15 at the time and it was so exciting and dramatic. Then after that I loved tennis and became a Davenport fan when she won Wimbledon. From there, I discovered the tragic events of Monica Seles and Capriati. I never saw Seles win a slam live but I saw Capriati win all three even though the UK time difference meant staying up very late to watch the Aussie open finals. I don't know about anyone else but those early 2000 years felt so much more appealing than the current. Week in, week out we had encounters with Hingis, Venus, Serena, Davenport, Seles, Capriati, Mauresmo and then Justine and Kim joined the mix. The Russians arrived too, plus we still had the veterans like Sanchez, Coetzer, Martinez, Testud and the notoriously difficult Nathalie Tauziat. These days just can't compare.
 

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Nope, never did. Luckily, in those days pro tennis was on TV virtually every week and I got to watch many, many matches.

While I did not get a chance to play the game, I was very busy playing baseball, softball, handball, paddle ball, running cross country, volleyball, and flag football. Eventually I became a coach and if I may be permitted the boast, had a fairly good amount of success as one. The game of baseball was especially good to me as I worked in field maintenance, free lance sports reporter, official scorer, have travelled to other states to watch the pro game, and gotten to know a few pro players. I wish tennis had been as good to me as baseball was but that's life fer ya.

Well i am glad you were able to find a sport you had a apassion for and it provided you with opportunities.. would you like to have a go at tennis though?


You should go to that club you werent allowed in as a child and have a lesson!
 

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They are showing classic Wimbledon matches on BBC to make up for the lack of live Wimbledon and so I am watching the 1978 women's final - Navratilova v Evert - right now!

I watched this as well, did you see Navratilova's complete air shot at the net lol, sad story that her parents couldn't be there, how could that of happened, politics bullshit.
 
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