By Steve Fink, World Tennis magazine, December 1989:
I met Chris Evert on the day she reached her first Grand Slam final in Paris 16 years ago, when I interviewed her for this magazine. We became good friends, and I found myself immersed in her career.
She soon realized that I was regarded by the sport’s inner circle as her Boswell, as the primary source of information about her record, and she knew that my recollection of her matches was invariably sharper than her own. Throughout her career she would defer to me at press conferences from Palm Beach to Wimbledon whenever she could not answer a question about herself.
But my involvement with her went much deeper than that. I attended both of her weddings, sat with her family at many of her critical contests in the major championships, and spoke with her frequently before, during and after tournaments to offer council.
Given those circumstances, and the highly unusual of our alliance, I made it a practice, with few exceptions, not to write about he. The conflict would be clear-cut, and I saw no reason to abuse proximity of my position. But this is the time to relax journalistic binds a bit and offer my intimate assessment. Hers was a unique journey through the seventies and across the eighties, and to understand how Evert impacted her era, there is only one place to begin.
In September 1970, at the age of 15, Evert planted the first true seed of her greatness by toppling the world’s No.1 player Margaret Court 7-6 7-6 in the semifinals at Charlotte, North Carolina. Only weeks earlier, Court had completed the Grand Slam by winning the US Open at Forest Hills on grass, but on the clay of Charlotte the Fort Lauderdale prodigy erased the rangy Australian. It was unmistakably a sign of what was to come.
Enjoy the second edition of Break Point, our monthly roundup of the best tennis-related articles on the web:
– another veteran player, Pat Cash talks about life on the Seniors tour: A Week With Tennis Champions: Private Planes, Celebrities and Locker Room Gossip
– ever wondered what it’s like to be a ballboy at the US Open? Enjoy this Grantland post: I Tried Out to Be a US Open Ball Boy and Saw Dave Chappelle, and All I Got Were These Two Lousy T-Shirts.
– in May 1984, six of the world’s Top 10 were American, as were 24 of the Top 50. 30 years later, there are only 3 Americans in the top 50, with a chance at winning a Slam really close to 0. Can US Men’s Tennis Rise Again?
– the story of Irish player James McGee, who qualified for the main draw of the US Open for the first time of his career: James McGee rekindles fond memories of grinding out wins in Gabon as he aims for the bright lights. Also James great blog post on financing the tour.
– why Wimbledon defeats the #USOpen game, set and match in the social media arena, by Tennis Buzz contributor Andreas Plastiras.
– and finally, Mauro’s article on how Stefan is transforming Federer into an “Edberg 2.0”
Photo credit: Margaret
Introducing a new feature on Tennis Buzz: Break Point, a monthly roundup of the best tennis-related articles on the web:
– find out what it looks like to attend the Wimbledon qualies at Roehampton in this great article by Liz for Grand Slam gal. Another must-read: Wimbledon 2014: A Fan’s Perspective on the Best Bits.
– discover Vigoro, the Edwardian attempt to merge tennis and cricket
– Andy Murray talks about Wimbledon, adidas and shorts in this interview by The Daily Street
– Nick Kyrgios made a mark at Wimbledon this year by ousting Rafael Nadal and reaching the quarterfinals. Heavy top spin looks at his first 50 pro matches.
– Venus Williams bares all in ESPN body issue and opens up about dealing with Sjogren’s syndrom
– the US Open is only one month away! Enjoy this behind the scenes tour of the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center
And it case you missed it, check out our Wimbledon coverage on Tennis Buzz.
I’ve also some good news to share with you: for the first time we’ve got a media credential, Peg will cover the early rounds of the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati for Tennis Buzz, so stay tuned!
Photo credit: The Daily Street
In the players’ box, in the Royal Box, in the commentary box or on the courts, former champions were everywhere!
2-time Wimbledon champion Stefan Edberg, Roger Federer’s coach:
3-time champion Boris Becker, now Novak Djokovic coach:
Amélie Mauresmo, Andy Murray’s new coach and winner in 2006:
The Australian-Serbian pair needed less than an hour to defeat 20 yr old Hao-Ching Chan and doubles veteran Max Mirnyi.
It is Sam second mixed doubles Wimbledon title (she claimed the 2008 title with Bob Bryan) and first for Zimonjic, who has the Australian Open and the French Open twice.
Big difference with the Federer-Edberg duo, Becker doesn’t hit with Djokovic, he just stands there, doing… not a lot.