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A bit of dirt on BJK and Evert...

When Chris first came out, many of the players were bitchy to her. BJK in an doco I have on tape said that 'Chris was great for womens tennis'.
BUT
When Chris wiped Billy out once in a match, BJK was very bitchy and said: good luck to all you girls with double hand backhands. She also wasn't happy when a very young Chris picked Bobby Riggs to win the battle of the sexes match.

Reading Margaret Courts first auotbiography (she was still playing when this came out) it seemed that earlier in her careers she got along OK with BJK. Tho they were quite opposites they never seemed to publicy slang each other which the likes of BJK, Martina, Chris, Hana have done to each other.

Not that they gave out compliments either!!! After their epic Wimbledon final something like 14-12 10-8 in 1970, years later both said that it wasn't the greatest match they had ever played in. However many other people disagree. BJK said that it was of a lower standard because of the injuries they both had!

When Margaret came back before her grandslam in 1970 she was thrashed by BJK at the Aust Open finals. BJK said nicely that Margaret would need another 12 months before anyone would see her best.

I wonder that because they lived in such different circles whether they really didn't care to comment on each other much???
 

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Nancy Richey

Yes, we have to keep bumping this thread to prominence. To help out.. here's a note on Nancy Richey... an underrated player and a lovely woman.

Nancy won the 1968 French Open Womens Singles Final, was runner up to Margaret Court in the 69 US Open Final and won the Wimbledon Doubles with Maria Bueno in 1966. I think she also won the US Clay Court championships 7 times and was ranked #2 in the world at one stage in the 60s. For many years throughout the 60s Nancy was ranked higher than Billie-Jean King in the US National rankings.

I recently sent Nancy Richey some videos of some of her matches from the 60s and 70s. Nancy had never seen footage of herself playing - except for the odd point here and there on a highlights tape, so she was thrilled to get this footage. She wrote to tell me that she had invited her friends and family over to watch some of the matches and they were so excited. That was great - just to hear back from her. But Nancy was even more appreciative than just that, she went to the trouble of sending me one of her old Teddy Tinling playing outfits, an old tennis racket and some great photos (including some of her little Jack Russell dog Paco who looks like a twin of mine!). What a wonderful woman!

Long live Nancy Richey! Tennis Legend.
 

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Craig - Is that the dress that you have stadning in your house??

Is that Nancey Richey's actual dress????

WOWser!!! Good for you!!

Then again, youve provided so many people with hours of fun and enjoyement, you deserve all those type of thanks you's!!!!
 

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LOL! Hi Philbo, I didn't know you were CzechFan! Now it makes sense..... I had forgotten you dropped in one day! :)

The Nancy Richey is now on display... along with the ones from King & Casals - I guess it's appropriate I display those ones together as they made such a great doubles team :)

Did you see the Richey one? Fantastic. Pink and white jumpsuit with a matching Pink hat! LOL. Teddy Tinling certainly was High Camp! You know I met him once in the early 80s at the Aussie Open. Unfortunately he was in such a rush we only chatted for a couple of minutes. How I would have loved to have talked with him about all the golden oldies including Lenglen.....

I am sad to hear you have lost respect for BJK. But I know what you mean about some of those calls that she agreed with. I mean some of them were very dodgy and she was so quick to agree.... Not to worry. I still love her.
 

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Apparently Nancy Richey was playing the very tall Karen Krantzcke of Aust once and Karen was arguing a line a call and Nancy just lost it! She screamed at Karen: 'I don't care if you're big... just stop arguing calls' or something to that effect. Karen and anyone else who heard was totally shocked as Richey was usually very serious, focussed but not usually so demonstrative.
Apparently Nancy and Karen made up after the match.... but it was something bordering on the bizarre because it came out of nowhere.

Apparently in her younger days Chris Evert was a bit scared of Nancy and thought that she didn't like her...... until one day Chris was telling a dirty joke and Nancy cracked up laughing hysterically which shocked Chris.....
 

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Nancy Richey cont...

A little more on Nancy now I have a few more mins...

She also won the Aussie Open in 67 beating Lesley Turner in the final 6-1 6-4, she made the Wimbledon QFs 7 times during a 9 year span, and made the semis once in 68. She also won the US Clay court championships 6 times in succession! In the US ClayCourts SFs, at the age of 33, she led Chris Evert 7-5, 5-0 and had two match points before Evert staged a remarkeable comeback to win.... Nancy actually had to reitire from cramps at 2-4 in the final set.

Anyway, thought I better add those few points about her. She was indeed a great player and is a wonderful woman! And she was a fierce competitor and very focussed on the court, but I guess she just loved the game so much she really took it seriously. She is just recovering from a broken ankle and is now playing socially again. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #49
That's a funny Karen K story, since if I remember correctly her nickname was "stone face" and Nancy tried to never show emotion on court as a sort of intimidation factor. "I guess if looks could kill, I would have killed a number of people", she later joked.

I'm surprised Ted Tingling got Nancy into a dress, as her usual attire consisted of shorts(rare then in the age of glam dresses). a big belt, and a floopy hat or visor when it was sunny.

Nancy was part of a Texas brother-sister duo, her brother being top tenner Cliff Richey.

Richey had her moments with Billie Jean King. In 1964 there was a huge debate after the USTA ranked Richey #1 with King #2, even though it was felt by most that King had the better year.

They had an amazing match at madison Square Garden in 1968. King led 6-2 5-3 and missed a sitter overhead on match point. nancy rolled on to win 2-6 7-5 6-0!!!!!

Nancy was best on clay, where she won her 1968 French Open. That year she beat Billie Jean in the semis. Nancy had almost decided not to go to Paris because of strikes and student demonstrations. It was the first year of Open tennis and the officials were afraid no one would show because the trains weren't running. There was record attendence, with fans in thousands coming on bicycles! Nancy quickly left Paris to escape the hills on stinking uncollected trash left from the strike.


Evert was afraid of more than Nancy's "look". Richey won the first 5 matches,the ONLY woman with a winning record vs. Chris early on until Austin led a head to head years later in 1981. nancy was so consistent that Chris just couldn't outsteady her until Evert developed more weapons. After 1972 Evert didn't lose again to nancy, though she came dramatically close in 1975.


They met in the US Clay at Indianapolis, and Richey led 7-6 5-0 40-15, two match points. Chris managed to come through that set and win it. By then Richey had cramps-and Evert completed a Houdini escape at 6-7 7-5 4-2, when Richey retired. This kept Evert's clay streak intact, and no one seriously came close to beating Chris on clay again til Austin stopped her at 125 straight.

It bears remembereing that in 1975 nancy was 33, a bit too old.
Evert leads their head to head only 6-5.

Last Richey story. In those days of amateur play the women were paid "under the table" if they were paid at all. One time an official took nancy behind some bushes to give her her dough and tried to give her a kiss with it!



In those days the players were "put up" with host families for an event. The host families often "bid" or used connections to get the name men and women. For the palyers it meant a home away from home, free food, laundry, a ride to the tournamnet, and even a cheering section if you were lucky. Well, it usually worked out fine, but on occasions some of the women(and men too) had to deal with "advances" from their hosts and hostesses!
Women tennis players were assumed to be either lesbian or "easy" because of the unchaperoned travel.
 

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Hi Rollo

Thanks for the extra notes on Nancy. She has admitted in recent chats that she took the game deadly seriously and that a lot of the players in the 60s and early 70s didn't appreciate her attitude to the game, nor her brothers.

As far as the Ted Tinling outfit she gave me - it isn't a dress. It is like a jump suit. A one piece outfit - like a top and shorts (very short shorts mind you) with a large hot pink belt and a matching hot pink hat. Not your typical Tinling design, but high camp just the same. :bounce:

I am going to ask Nancy some questions next time we chat eg. who were her favourite doubles partners, who did she love playing and who did she dislike playing etc. I will post her answers here. I think that would be fun.

I did the same with Durr a few years ago. Her favourite partners were Ginny Wade and Anne Jones, although she said that Ginny was very hard to get to know as she really kept to herself a lot. She loved playing the S&V as she loved to try and pass them and lob them etc. Didn't like playing Evert as she said that Evert was very similar to herself (eg. baseline tactician) but only better! :) She also loved playing Goolagong and Bueno as she adored their styles, but said she sometimes got trapped by watching their beautiful shots and not focussing on the match fully!
 

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Great idea Tennis Video, I would love to hear what the players thought about each other. I read that Billie Jean thought Ann Jones was the toughest player that she had to play in the 60's, Darlene Hard and Margaret Court had a bitter rivalery and so did Margaret and Maria Bueno as some have stated in previous posts. I've read that quotes from Margaret Court, Chris Evert, Virginia Wade, Ann Jones, Rosie Casals and various other players that Billie Jean King was the most aggressive and competitive player that had ever played against. I truly believe that if Billie Jean could have just concentrated on Tennis, she would have been the best of all time. Many have stated that she almost impossible to beat at the Majors! She wasn't allowed to play the French Open until the mid to late 60's and she only played the Australian open three times during her prime. Her U.S. and Wimbledon titles total 10, just behind Martina and Steffi in the open era!
 

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Discussion Starter #52
King was something of a late bloomer wan't she macn? She never did get the support or have the focus of a Court or Bueno (King attended college where she met husband Larry), so I believe she could have won more slams early on. The real missed opportunity was not entering the Aussie in 72-when she won the other 3 majors.

Speaking of King, she is the focus of one great read on th e1973 season called A Long Way Baby , which is by a woman writer(and feminist).That is important, because if you think about it almost all the tennis books are written by men.

This book is a laugh right form the start. Alternate titles were

Tennis Without Balls
Nylons or Gut
Curve and Volley
Deep Stroke(a pun on the porno movie Deep Throat)
Ladies of the Court
Game, Set, Snatch
 

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Discussion Starter #53
Helga Mastoff

from the book A long way Baby and Rollo's head

St. Petersburg, Florida 1973

"Watch Mastoff when there are no linesman, and you'll see her call a dozen "in" balls "out", a player said as Helga was playing Martina Navartilova in the baking sun. She also had a habit, if there were linesmen, of positioning herself between them and the ball so they had trouble seeing the lines."

Helga had model looks, a storklike blond of 6' with skinny legs.

Helga lost to Martina,and quickly runs to catch a plane for Germany, where here husband is waiting. There's one hitch however: " I had expected to beat ze Czech girl love und love, i didn't bozzer to pack", or to make a reservation that day. Her reservation was for th enext day.. No problem. She saunters up to the counter and presents the ticket. "I'm on ze 5 o'clock fight to New York, my bags are checked', she lied. "Ze never bozzer to check the date!", she tells the author. Another trick the German uses is to make reservations on multiple days.

Later that year Helga made th esemis of the US Open. Helga had done better than expected, saying, "I sought i would lose in zee second round. I've packed und unpacked three times already!".

Those who think Jennifer Capriati has a potty mouth should have met Patty Hogan, an Irish-American girl with a terrible temper. She came about her yelling on court honestly, taking verbal abuse from her father. It was said by some that her father used to hit her if she lost.

Typical Patty:

"This has got to be the RUDEST crowd I've ever seen! "she sceams at the top of her lungs at the St. Petersburg event.

When Patti loses a doubles match to the Evert sisters she storms off court yelling "motherF*cker, motherf*cker!

In 1973 the author(Grace Lictenstein) had no idea how great one little Czech would be. This is all she says on Martina:

"The most promising newcomer among the foreigners was Martina Navartilova, a large, square 16 year old left-hander
whose high Slavic cheekbones and boyish manner suggested she would look just as at home in a Prague shoe factory as on a tennis court." Patti kids martina about being the tour "pancake champ".

Martina giggled. "I can't beeleef I ate da whole t'ing" she siad, pointing to her t-shirt while munching on a hamburger. Her first trip to America had seen her put on 10 pounds in 8 weeks.

"I hof to borrow all new clothes, evenmy feet get bigger!".


Weight is a big issue-with none of the media guides coming close to the truth about self reported weights and ages.

"Maybe I was 135 a few days after I was born!" one laughs. Another chimes in. "It's not only your weight--how come i get older every year and everyone else stays the same age?".

Even up and coming stars get in on the act. Chris Evert shot up from 5'2 to 5'6" from age 16 to 18. Her weight also shot up.
A local reporter in St. Pet asked her her weight.

"I weigh", she paused, squeezing her eyes as if debating whether or not to come out with the truth-"uh, 120." Then she reached over, put her hand on th esportwriter's knee,looked deep in his eyes and added, "But I REALLY would like to weigh 118. Can't you just say 118?"

LOL. Chris was using her feminine tricks at a young age:)

If there's interest I'll put up more from Long way Baby. Other characters include Wade, Court, King, Evert, Casals, Heldman, etc.
Let me know which one(s) strike your fancy to hear about.
 

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"A Long Way Baby" is definitely one of my favorite books. Very well-written and full of information. The writer didn't pretend like she knew everything about tennis; in fact, she went out of her way to tell us how little she did know when she first began writing the book. I've read it many times and it's always an interesting read.

I read an e-mail from Nancy Richey to a Martina Navratilova mailing list. I was totally surprised she joined a mailing list for Martina's fans! That list has since disbanded, but I still have that e-mail. I e-mailed her back, but got no reply! :wavey:

Talking about Frankie Durr, I'm going to post this excerpt from Evonne Goolagong-Cawley's 1974 autobiography "Evonne: On the Move". I have yet to read her second autobiography "Home" but this book is a good read too. Here is Evonne talking about her 1971 Roland Garros quarterfinal against Durr.

After beating a fellow Australian, Wendy Gilchrist, and the wily Italian, Lea Pericoli - a woman who endangers birds and low-flying planes with her lobs - I was in the quarters against the local heroine, Françoise Durr. Francoise, in 1967 the first Frenchwoman to win their title since 1948, had become the favorite with Court out of the running.

Self-taught, Frankie came out of Algeria to astound the tennis world with science fiction strokes - strokes so weird that they make the gargoyles on Notre Dame Cathedral seem normal by comparison. She holds the racket as though it were a table knife - but she can cut you up with it. Tremendously accurate and combative, she glares and stomps about the court like Madame Defarge. She twists herself into a pretzel to deliver her backhand, sometimes kneeling in the bargain but she can put the ball anywhere. Her popcorn-ball serve travels at about four miles per hour, but she places it well and is ready to go anywhere you hit it.

Frankie is a weird experience on court - and a very friendly person away from it. She was showing me plenty I hadn't seen as split the first six games. French spectators normally pay as much attention to women's tennis as they would to a paté from Wagga Wagga, but we had a good crowd. She and Patrick Proisy were the last of the natives in the tournament, and they were also curious about me.

From 3-3 I guess I completely satisfied their curiosity. It cam to me that I could do anything on this clay. Drop shots worked. So did lobs. I was delighted to find that I could come to the net if I prepared my way, zooming up if she gave me a short ball to work with. I served an volleyed now adn then, jsut to catch her off guard. I was driving my ground strokes to the corners and running happily in chasing down hers. I was learning that I could win points on clay at the net against a sharpshooter like Frankie if I stayed alert and got myself ready to make another volley no matter how good my first volley had been. Australians who grew up as serve-and-volleyers were helpless in Europe until they made themselves realize that their best shots would usually be retrieved and fired back. Once they got over the shock of not winning a point outrights with a crushing volley, and tried to anticipate where they'd have to go to make two or three more volleys before the point would end, then they had an idea of how to force and win on clay.

I was in that mood and won nine straight games for a 6-3 6-0 victory. Nobody had beaten Frankie like that in her own playground.

"You're a magician today, Evonne," she said. "I can do nothing."
 

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Hi Zummi

I would be very surprised that the real Nancy Richey would have joined a Martina fan club...

Anyway, I have to say I loved 'a long way baby' as well. And thanks for sharing the Evonne story about Frankie. I sometimes quote that one as well. :) I LOVE the quote about Lea Pericoli too. I know her and her partner (Lazzarino or something) used to lob their way through entire doubles matches! :eek: :bounce: Fantastic!

Ginny Wade has some great quotes about Frankie and her crazy 'mongrel' shots as she called them. Unfortunately I don't have the books here at work to post the quotes, but I will get to them one day.
 

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Craig - No, it wasnt me who has lost respect for BJK over agreeing with linecalls!!

I was defending her in another thread!!!

I think it was the best commentary we've ever had!!! I wish Pam did more for Channel 7 though....
 

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Hi CzechFan!

No worries about King - obviously I got it mixed up, anyway, I was just kidding around ;)

Shame you don't play more tennis with us on Thursday nights. One day maybe... are you playing in the Gaymes in November?
 

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Craig - Ive hardly picked up a raquet in the past 12 months... Thursday night is bit too above my standard..

Do you play on sundays in the social thing?? I would like to come to that...
 

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I'm enjoying reading these stories from the formative years of the tour.

I think one of the main areas where the "tennis community" blew it in allowing the tennis boom of the 70's to peter out by the mid 80's, was their disdain for women's tennis. Sure, they had Borg, Connors, Nastase, Smith, Ashe, etc., and later, McEnroe, but tennis also had King, Court, Goolagong, Evet, Wade, Navratilova, Casals, et al. They were willingly casting aside half of their drawing ability. That would be like a team sport focusing on one conference and ignoring the other. Say, for example, the NBA only touting the West when the Lakers blossomed throughout the 80's, and ignoring any talents that came along in the East (like that Jordan fellow).

If the tennis tournaments, federations, media, etc., had given as much emphasis (and respect) to it's women stars in the 70's, tennis would have had an even bigger (and more solid) foundation, instead of slipping off like a fad.

Even today, the tennis community doesn't fully recognize the debt it owes to tennis' original "Super 9"; the embers of the original Slims tour. Not only did they show that a tour run by the players could be viable, but they also made sports (particlarly tennis) viable as a profession for women. This in turn made it possible for today's superstars to be drawn into the game. In recent years, it has been the women's stars that have propped up the sport, drawing a lot of attention that otherwise would not be there.

It's amazing. 30+ years later, and we're still dealing with a lot of the same stuff. When will they realize that when one tour does well, the whole sport benefits? The women realized it a long time ago. Back in the mid 90's, when the women were in a brief lull (Seles and Capriati out, Sabatini in a slump, Navratilova retiring, etc.), many a reporter would ask women's tour officials their reaction to the Sampras/Agassi rivalry, no doubt expecting some sour grapes from the women at being overshadowed a bit. Instead, the reaction was "we think it's great". Because they realized that the Sampras/Agassi rivalry not only made men's tennis bigger, it made tennis bigger, which was to the benefit of the women as well. So there was no petty sniping or potshots at the ther tour. Quite a contrast with the current situation, eh?

Oops, gotta go. Someone else needs this soapbox. :)
 

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Hi Brian

Couldn't agree more with your comments! And the fact is that the depth at the TOP of womens tennis is fantastic - there are quite a number of players who can win the quality tournaments. This hasn't been the case since - which you correctly mentioned - the early to mid 70s when we had such a rich line up of talent it is breathtaking to even think about:

King, Court, Evert, Goolagong, Wade, a young Navratilova and a supporting cast that included Richey, Barker and Morozova name a few. And we can't forget Durr! LOL. My, weren't those the days. In my mind, the glory days of womens tennis - and surprisingly, as you mentioned, not truly fully supported as they should have been. Anyway, it is great to see the great state of womens tennis today. This is the most excited I have been by the womens tour since those heady times. :bounce:
 
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