Here’s the updated list of singles and doubles entries for the Rio Olympics. Mixed doubles entries will be confirmed on site during the Olympic Tennis Event.
Men’s singles: Juan Martin del Potro, Federico Delbonis, Juan Monaco, Guido Pella
Men’s doubles: Juan Martin del Potro/Maximo Gonzalez, Federico Delbonis/Guillermo Duran
Women’s singles: Sam Stosur, Daria Gavrilova
Women’s doubles: Daria Gavrilova/Sam Stosur, Anastasia Rodionova/Arina Rodionova
Men’s singles: John Millman, Thanasi Kokkinakis, Jordan Thompson, Sam Groth
Men’s doubles: Chris Guccione/John Peers
Men’s doubles: Oliver Marach/Alexander Peya
Men’s singles: Darian King
Men’s doubles: Aliaksandr Bury/Max Mirnyi
Women’s singles: Yanina Wickmayer, Kirsten Flipkens
Women’s doubles: Kirsten Flipkens/Yanina Wickmayer
Men’s singles: David Goffin
Women’s singles: Mirza Basic
Men’s singles: Damir Dzumhur
Women’s singles: Teliana Pereira
Women’s doubles: Teliana Pereira, Paula Cristina Goncalves/Teliana Pereira
Men’s singles: Thomaz Bellucci, Rogerio Dutra Silva
Men’s doubles: Marcelo Melo/Bruno Soares, Thomaz Bellucci/Andre Sa
Women’s singles: Tsvetana Pironkova
Men’s singles: Grigor Dimitrov
Women’s singles: Eugenie Bouchard
Women’s doubles: Eugenie Bouchard/Gabriela Dabrowski
Men’s singles: Vasek Pospisil
Men’s doubles: Daniel Nestor/Vasek Pospisil
Milos Raonic was one of the poster boy for Canadian Olympic Committee campaign, but decided to withdraw from the Games (you know, Zika and all that…), that tells a lot about the man…
Men’s doubles: Julio Peralta/Hans Podlipnik-Castillo
Women’s singles: Peng Shuai, Zhang Shuai, Wang Qiang
Women’s doubles: Xu Yi-Fan/Zheng Saisai, Peng Shuai/Zhang Shuai
Women’s singles: Hsieh Su-Wei
Women’s doubles: Chan Hao-Ching/Chan Yung-Jan, Chuang Chia-Jung/Hiseh Su-Wei
Men’s singles: Lu Yen-Hsun
Women’s singles: Mariana Duque-Marino
Men’s doubles: Juan Sebastian Cabal/Robert Farah
Women’s singles: Ana Konjuh
Men’s singles: Marin Cilic, Borna Coric
Men’s doubles: Marin Cilic/Marin Draganja
Men’s singles: Marcos Baghdatis
Women’s singles: Petra Kvitova, Lucie Safarova, Barbora Strycova
Women’s doubles: Andrea Hlavackova/Lucie Hradecka, Lucie Safarova/Barbora Strycova
Men’s singles: Lukas Rosol
Men’s doubles: Lukas Rosol/Radek Stepanek
Women’s singles: Caroline Wozniacki
The former world number one is Denmark’s flagbearer, but her medal chances are quite limited.
Men’s singles: Victor Estrella Burgos
Women’s singles: Kristina Mladenovic, Carolina Garcia, Alize Cornet
Women’s doubles: Carolina Garcia/Kristina Mladenovic
Men’s singles: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Gael Monfils, Gilles Simon, Benoit Paire
Men’s doubles: Pierre-Hugues Herbert/Nicolas Mahut, Gael Monfils/Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
Men’s singles: Nikoloz Basilashvili
Women’s singles: Angelique Kerber, Andrea Petkovic, Annika Beck, Laura Siegemund
Women’s doubles: Angelique Kerber/Andrea Petkovic, Anna-Lena Groenefeld/Laura Siegemund
Men’s singles: Philipp Kohlschreiber, Dustin Brown, Jan-Lennard Struff
Men’s doubles: Philipp Kohlschreiber/Jan-Lennard Struff
Tennis brought Germany quite a few medals in the past:
– Steffi Graf won the gold in Seoul in 1988 to complete the Golden Grand Slam, as well as the womens doubles bronze medal with Claudia Kohde-Kilsch. They were representing West Germany (Federal Republic of Germany) back then.
– Graf won silver in Barcelona four years later, while Boris Becker and Michael Stich, who were not the best of friends, teamed up to win gold in mens doubles.
– the teams of Marc-Kevin Goellner/David Prinosil and Nicolas Kiefer/Rainer Schuettler took respectively bronze in Atlanta in 1996 and silver in Athens in 2004.
– in 2000 in Sydney, Tommy Haas made an unexpected run to the final to catch silver.
Australian Open champion and Wimbledon runner-up Angelique Kerber is Germany’s biggest tennis medal hope in Rio.
Women’s singles: Johanna Konta, Heather Watson
Women’s doubles: Johanna Konta/Heather Watson
Men’s singles: Andy Murray, Kyle Edmund
Men’s doubles: Andy Murray/Jamie Murray, Colin Fleming/Dominic Inglot
The 2012 London Olympics proved a turning point in Andy Murray‘s career: one month after his devastating defeat to Federer in the Wimbledon final, he turned the tables and he beat the same opponent on the same court to win the gold medal in front of his home crowd. He went on to win his maiden Grand Slam title at the US Open in September and his first Wimbledon title a year later.
He will compete in the three events: singles, doubles (with his brother Jamie) and mixed doubles (with recent mixed doubles Wimbledon champion Heather Watson) and will be the flag bearer for Team GB.
Women’s singles: Timea Babos
Women’s doubles: Timea Babos/Reka-Luca Jani
Women’s doubles: Sania Mirza/Prarthana Thombare
Men’s doubles: Rohan Bopanna/Leander Paes
1.3 billion people – 1 medal: Leander Paes won the singles bronze medal at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games, the one and only medal for India in these games. Both his parents are former Olympians: his father won a bronze medal in field hockey in Munich in 1972, and his mother was a member of the Indian basketball team at the same games.
Men’s singles: Dudi Sela
Women’s singles: Roberta Vinci, Sara Errani, Karin Knapp
Women’s doubles: Sara Errani/Roberta Vinci
Men’s singles: Fabio Fognini, Andreas Seppi, Paolo Lorenzi, Thomas Fabbiano
Men’s doubles: Fabio Fognini/Andreas Seppi
Women’s singles: Misaki Doi, Nao Hibino
Women’s doubles: Misaki Doi/Eri Hozumi
Men’s singles: Kei Nishikori, Taro Daniel, Yuichi Sugita
Women’s singles: Yaroslava Shvedova
Women’s doubles: Yaroslava Shvedova/Galina Voskoboeva
Women’s singles: Jelena Ostapenko
Women’s singles: Stephanie Vogt
Men’s singles: Ricardas Berankis
Men’s singles: Gilles Muller
Men’s doubles: Santiago Gonzalez/Miguel Angel Reyes Varela
Women’s singles: Danka Kovinic
Women’s singles: Kiki Bertens
Men’s singles: Robin Haase
Men’s doubles: Robin Haase/Jean-Julien Rojer
Men’s doubles: Marcus Daniell/Michael Venus
Women’s singles: Veronica Cepede Royg
Women’s singles: Agnieszka Radwanska, Magda Linette
Women’s doubles: Klaudia Jans-Ignacik/Paula Kania
Men’s singles: Jerzy Janowicz
Men’s doubles: Lukasz Kubot/Marcin Matkowski
Men’s singles: Joao Sousa, Gastao Elias
Women’s singles: Monica Puig
Women’s singles: Irina-Camelia Begu, Monica Niculescu
Women’s doubles: Irina-Camelia Begu/Monica Niculescu, Andreea Mitu/Raluca Olaru
Men’s doubles: Florin Mergea/Horia Tecau
Women’s singles: Svetlana Kuznetsova, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, Daria Kasatkina, Ekaterina Makarova
Women’s doubles: Ekaterina Makarova/Elena Vesnina, Daria Kasatkina/Svetlana Kuznetsova
Men’s singles: Andrey Kuznetsov, Evgeny Donskoy, Teymuraz Gabashvili
Women’s singles: Jelena Jankovic, Ana Ivanovic
Women’s doubles: Jelena Jankovic/Aleksandra Krunic
Men’s singles: Novak Djokovic, Viktor Troicki
Men’s doubles: Novak Djokovic/Nenad Zimonjic
Women’s singles: Anna Karolina Schmiedlova
Men’s singles: Andrej Martin
Men’s doubles: Andrej Martin/Igor Zelenay
Women’s singles: Polona Hercog
Women’s singles: Garbine Muguruza, Carla Suarez Navarro
Women’s doubles: Garbine Muguruza/Carla Suarez Navarro, Anabel Medina Garrigues/Arantxa Parra-Santonja
Men’s singles: Rafael Nadal, David Ferrer, Roberto Bautista Agut, Albert Ramos-Vinolas
Men’s doubles: Marc Lopez/Rafael Nadal, Roberto Bautista Agut/David Ferrer
Since tennis returned to the Olympics in 1988, Spanish players have won medals at every Olympiad except London 2012. Arantxa Sanchez Vicario won 4 medals in two Olympic Games (2 silver, 2 bronze) and Conchita Martinez was the first player to win medals at three Olympic Games (silver with Arantxa Sanchez Vicario in Barcelona ’92, bronze with Arantxa in Atlanta ’96 and silver with Virginia Ruano Pascual in Athens 2004).
Gold medallist in Beijing in 2008, forced to pulled out of London 4 years ago, Rafael Nadal will make his comeback to competition after a 2 months injury break. Nadal will also compete in the men’s doubles competition with Marc Lopez with whom he won twice in Dubai and twice in Indian Wells, and in mixed doubles with Roland Garros champion Garbine Muguruza. He will be Spain’s flagbearer.
Women’s singles: Johanna Larsson
Despite Sweden’s rich tennis history (3 former number one and multiple top 10 players), 71th-ranked Johanna Larsson is the only tennis player representing Sweden in Rio. Stefan Edberg took the gold medal in Los Angeles at the tennis demonstration event and won singles and doubles (with Anders Jarryd) bronze medals in Seoul in 1988. Simon Aspelin and Thomas Johannson took the silver medal in the men’s doubles in Beijing.
Women’s singles: Timea Bacsinszky
Women’s doubles: Timea Bacsinszky/Martina Hingis
Men’s doubles: Sanchai Ratiwatana/Sonchat Ratiwatana
Women’s singles: Ons Jabeur
Men’s singles: Malek Jaziri
Women’s singles: Cagla Buyukakcay
Women’s singles: Elina Svitolina, Lesia Tsurenko
Women’s doubles: Olga Savchuk/Elina Svitolina, Lyudmyla Kichenok/Nadiia Kichenok
Men’s singles: Illya Marchenko
Men’s doubles: Illya Marchenko/Denys Molchanov
Men’s singles: Pablo Cuevas
Women’s singles: Serena Williams, Venus Williams, Madison Keys, Sloane Stephens
Women’s doubles: Bethanie Mattek-Sands/CoCo Vandeweghe, Serena Williams/Venus Williams
Men’s singles: Jack Sock, Steve Johnson, Denis Kudla, Brian Baker
Men’s doubles: Bob Bryan/Mike Bryan, Steve Johnson/Jack Sock
US female players won 4 of the 7 singles gold medals: Jennifer Capriati (Barcelona ’92), Lindsay Davenport (Atlanta ’96), Venus Williams (Sydney 2000), Serena Williams (London 2012). They also won 6 out of 7 womens doubles titles: Zina Garrison/Pam Shriver (Seoul ’88), Gigi Fernandez/Mary Joe Fernandez (Barcelona ’92, Atlanta ’96), Serena Williams/Venus Williams (Sydney 2000, Beijing 2008, London 2012). Serena is the heavy favorite to retain her titles in both singles and doubles.
On the men’s side, only Andre Agassi in 1996, took the mens singles gold, while Ken Flach/Robert Seguso (Seoul ’88) and Bob Bryan/Mike Bryan (London 2012) won the doubles events.
Men’s singles: Denis Istomin
They have withdrawn: Simona Halep, Victoria Azarenka, Dominika Cibulkova, Belinda Bencic, Francesca Schiavone, Roger Federer, Stan Wawrinka, Milos Raonic, Tomas Berdych, Richard Gasquet, Bernard Tomic, Nick Kyrgios, Feliciano Lopez, Ernests Gulbis, Jiri Vesely.
Like strawberries and cream, the Queue and all-white outfits, the champion’s climb to the players’ box to celebrate his victory with his closed ones has become a tradition at Wimbledon. It all started with Pat Cash back in 1987:
“Champions of the past had celebrated their wins in time honoured fashion. Most used to jump the net and run up to commiserate with the person they had just beaten; this was the style of the Australians such as Laver, Emerson, Hoad and Fraser. But I wasn’t prepared to do that with Ivan Lendl; I didn’t like the guy at all and I wasn’t about to sympathise with him.
Don’t get me wrong: I’m a great lover of Wimbledon’s traditions and everything they stand for, but I wanted to go where no champion had ever gone before. Suddenly I made up my mind, and nothing or nobody was going to stop me. I had looked up to the players box, and so many of the people who meant so much to me were there: my coach Ian Barclay, my girlfriend Anne-Britt, my dad, my sister Renee, my uncle Brian, and the woman who had helped me become one of the fittest players ever to walk on a tennis court, Ann Quinn. I had to be up there with them, and I was going to show my gratitude by climbing up to them.
Why did I do it? Growing up I’d always seen myself as just a normal Aussie kid who liked rock and roll music, football and girls, but I suppose I was just a little bit left of centre. I was kind of crazy, and always tried to be a bit different. My family upbringing had never involved a lot of hugging, but I had it in my head that if I ever won Wimbledon I would show the world how much I actually felt for those people. I wanted to be with them for these most memorable minutes of my life, and the most public way of showing my thanks was to do it in this greatest arena in tennis. So off I went.” 
Since then, 14 players have scaled terraces to the players’ box to embrace their family and coaches.
The most unexpected – and out of character – climb was probably Sampras‘ when he beat Pat Rafter in 2000 and broke Roy Emerson’s Grand Slam record:
“I finally won it, 6-7 7-6 6-4 6-2. It was dusk by then, and flashbulbs went off like a thousand lightning strikes. I looked over at Paul [Annacone] in the players’ box. He gestured up toward the area where we knew my folks were sitting. I was disoriented, but I knew what to do next – I climbed into the stands to find and hug my folks. And those flashbulbs just kept exploding. The scene was surreal.
Left to my own devices, I probably wouldn’t have climbed into the stands. Thinking about it in advance, I would have said “None of us likes to make a really big scene, and my parents would find it embarrassing, I don’t think I’ll do that.” But when Paul signaled me, I knew immediately it was the right thing to do. Much like when I had to speak at Tim Gullikson’s funeral, my first reaction was to avoid drama and attention. But when the moment arrived in both those cases, I knew enough to do the right thing. As Paul said later, when I asked him why he had thought to signal me, “How often to you break the Grand Slam record, at a place that’s been so good to you, in front of people who have been so good to you?” 
The most spectacular was Nadal‘s one after his thrilling marathon win over Federer in 2008.
“I collapsed flat on my back on the Wimbledon grass, arms outstretched, fists clenched, roaring with triumph. The silence of the Centre Court gave way to pandemonium, an I succumbed, at long last, to the crowd’s euphoria, letting it wash over me, liberating myself from the mental prison I had inhabited from start to finish of the match, all day, the night before, the full two weeks of the greatest tennis tournament on earth. […] the tears came, and there was nothing I could do to stop them, and there was one more thing I had to do before the ceremony, one emotional release I needed before I could behave with some semblance of the restraint that Wimbledon tradition required.
I ran toward the corner where my father and mother and Toni, Titin, Carlos Costa, Tuts and Dr Cotorro had been sitting, and were now standing, and I clambered up the seats and scaled a wall to reach them. I was crying, and my father, the first to greet me, was crying too, and we hugged, and I hugged my mother, and I hugged Toni and the three of us all held one another in one great, tight family embrace.” 
After Rafa celebrated with his family, he made a U-turn towards the Royal Box to greet the Spanish Crown Prince and his wife.
“A few fraught minutes (and deuces) later, the title was mine. In the celerations after Novak’s decisive netted backhand, I was aware that people had started to come onto the court. When I finally sat down, I saw Andrew Jarrett coming over.
“Have I got enough time to go to my family and friends?” I asked.
“You need to be quick.”
I climbed up to the players’ box and went to Ivan first. He was sitting next to Novak’s team. It wasn’t a conscious decision to seek him out, but it was fitting that he was the first person I saw.
I’ve no idea if Ivan said anything to me or not. Two things I recall: my uncle, Neil, was sitting a few rows back and he was so desperate to high-five me that he reached forward and stuck his armpit right in Sir Chris Hoy’s face. Then, of course, I hadn’t seen my mum and someone shouted “Your mum, your mum”, so I went back and gave her a hug.” 
 Uncovered by Pat Cash
 A champion’s mind by Pete Sampras and Peter Bodo
 Rafa by John Carlin
 Seventy-seven my road to Wimbledon glory by Andy Murray
The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club:
Wimbledon guided tour – part 1
Wimbledon guided tour – part 2
Wimbledon Centre Court roof
Court 3 : a new Show Court at Wimbledon
Waiting in the Queue to Wimbledon
Wimbledon Museum: The Queue exhibition
The Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Museum: Player Memorabilia
A trip down memory lane:
Wimbledon ‘s biggest upsets
Wimbledon memories: Mrs Blanche Bingley Hillyard
Wimbledon memories: Charlotte Cooper Sterry
Wimbledon memories: Dora Boothby
Portrait of Wimbledon champion Ann Jones
Wimbledon 1969: Laver’s getting beat by an Indian
Rod Laver – John Newcombe Wimbledon 1969
Around the grounds at Wimbledon in 1971
Wimbledon 1975: Ashe vs Connors
1976: Bjorn Borg first Wimbledon title
Portrait of 5-time Wimbledon champion Bjorn Borg
Wimbledon 1976: Chris Evert defeats Evonne Goolagong
Portrait of Virginia Wade, winner in 1977
1981: First Wimbledon title for McEnroe
1982: Jimmy Connors defeats John McEnroe
1984: John McEnroe defeats Jimmy Connors
1985: Boris Becker, the man on the moon
1986: Boris Becker defeats Ivan Lendl, wins second Wimbledon title
Portrait of 3-time Wimbledon champion Boris Becker
Wimbledon 1988: An era ends as Graf beats Navratilova
Wimbledon 1988: Edberg a deserving new champion
Portrait of 2-time Wimbledon champion Stefan Edberg
Wimbledon 1990: Becker vs Edberg
1990: Martina Navatilova’s historic 9th Wimbledon title
Wimbledon 1991: the first Middle Sunday
1992: first Grand Slam for Andre Agassi
Andre Agassi: thanks to Wimbledon I realized my dreams
1993: Pete Sampras defeats Jim Courier
1994: Pete Sampras defeats Goran Ivanisevic
1995: Tim Henman disqualified!
Wimbledon 1996: singing in the rain
1996: Richard Krajicek upsets Pete Sampras
Wimbledon 1996: a winning streak
1997: Pete Sampras defeats Cédric Pioline
2000 Wimbledon SF: Pat Rafter defeats Andre Agassi
2000 Wimbledon Final: Pete Sampras defeats Pat Rafter
2001 Wimbledon 4th round: Federer defeats Sampras
Wimbledon 2010: Rafael Nadal defeats Tomas Berdych
The Spirit of Wimbledon: a 4-part documentary by Rolex retracing Wimbledon history
Wimbledon 2012: Roger Federer defeats Andy Murray
Andy Murray’s road to the Wimbledon 2013 final
Wimbledon 2013: Andy Murray, 77 years after Fred Perry
Wimbledon 2014 coverage
Wimbledon 2015 coverage
Fashion and gear:
Who will win Wimbledon 2016?
- Novak Djokovic (53%, 50 Votes)
- Roger Federer (21%, 20 Votes)
- Andy Murray (17%, 16 Votes)
- Dominic Thiem (5%, 5 Votes)
- Kei Nishikori (1%, 1 Votes)
- Stan Wawrinka (1%, 1 Votes)
- Tomas Berdych (1%, 1 Votes)
- Milos Raonic (1%, 1 Votes)
- Richard Gasquet (0%, 0 Votes)
- David Goffin (0%, 0 Votes)
- Someone else (0%, 0 Votes)
Total Voters: 95
Who will win Wimbledon 2016?
- Serena Williams (33%, 8 Votes)
- Garbine Muguruza (33%, 8 Votes)
- Victoria Azarenka (17%, 4 Votes)
- Simona Halep (8%, 2 Votes)
- Angelique Kerber (4%, 1 Votes)
- Someone else (4%, 1 Votes)
- Agnieszka Radwanska (0%, 0 Votes)
- Roberta Vinci (0%, 0 Votes)
- Belinda Bencic (0%, 0 Votes)
- Venus Williams (0%, 0 Votes)
- Timea Bacsinszky (0%, 0 Votes)
Total Voters: 24
Roland Garros visitor’s guide:
A trip down memory lane:
1956: First time at Roland Garros for Rod Laver
Portrait of Manuel Santana, first Spaniard to capture a Grand Slam title in 1961
1967: Françoise Durr defeats Lesley Turner
1969: Rod Laver defeats Ken Rosewall
Portrait of 6-time Roland Garros champion Bjorn Borg
Portrait of Adriano Panatta, the only player to beat Bjorn Borg at Roland Garros
1978: Virginia Ruzici defeats Mima Jausovec
1978: Bjorn Borg defeats Guillermo Vilas
1982: At the request of Monsieur Wilander
1982: first Grand Slam for Mats Wilander
1983: Yannick Noah defeats Mats Wilander
1984 French Open: Ivan Lendl defeats John McEnroe
1985 French Open: Chris Evert defeats Martina Navratilova
Roland Garros 1985: Mats Wilander defeats Ivan Lendl
Roland Garros 1988: bold Leconte swept aside by a Mats for all surfaces
Portrait of Natasha Zvereva, 1988 runner-up
Portrait of Arantxa Sanchez, 1989 French Open champion
Portrait of Michael Chang, 1989 French Open champion
1990 French Open: Opposites attract, Gomez defeats Agassi
Roland Garros 1990: Defending champion Sanchez loses in the first round
Roland Garros 1990: Edberg and Becker lose in the first round
1991 French Open 3RD: Michael Chang defeats Jimmy Connors
1991 French Open final: Jim Courier defeats Andre Agassi
1996: An unflinching Edberg causes a grand upset
Roland Garros 1996: Pete Sampras run through the semi-finals
1997: Going ga-ga over Guga
Steffi Graf – Martina Hingis Roland Garros 1999
2000: Mary Pierce finds peace and glory
2004: Coria vs Gaudio: the egotist vs the underdog
2005: Rafael Nadal defeats Mariano Puerta
2006: Nadal defeats Federer, wins second Roland Garros title
A look back at Roland Garros 2011
A look back at Roland Garros 2014
A look back at Roland Garros 2015
Pictures and Recaps:
Fashion and gear:
Who will win Roland Garros 2016?
- Rafael Nadal (50%, 125 Votes)
- Novak Djokovic (29%, 73 Votes)
- Andy Murray (11%, 27 Votes)
- Roger Federer (5%, 12 Votes)
- Kei Nishikori (2%, 5 Votes)
- Stan Wawrinka (1%, 3 Votes)
- Other (1%, 2 Votes)
- Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (0%, 1 Votes)
- Tomas Berdych (0%, 1 Votes)
- Richard Gasquet (0%, 1 Votes)
- David Ferrer (0%, 0 Votes)
Total Voters: 250
Who will win Roland Garros 2016?
- Serena Williams (42%, 47 Votes)
- Victoria Azarenka (15%, 17 Votes)
- Angelique Kerber (13%, 15 Votes)
- Garbine Muguruza (12%, 13 Votes)
- Simona Halep (7%, 8 Votes)
- Other (4%, 5 Votes)
- Carla Suarez Navarro (4%, 4 Votes)
- Agnieszka Radwanska (2%, 2 Votes)
- Belinda Bencic (1%, 1 Votes)
- Petra Kvitova (1%, 1 Votes)
- Roberta Vinci (0%, 0 Votes)
Total Voters: 113
From 25 years of the Tennis Europe Junior Tour:
You play now with a lot of people you first faced in those days. What do you remember of your current rivals from back then? Famously, you and Djokovic were born in the same week…
Yeah, Novak and I first played at Tarbes and I won 6-0 6-1, so unfortunately times have changed a little since then! We would have been 11 years old, and I can clearly remember the court that we played on and everything. It’s strange because I don’t really remember any of the other matches I played that week, apart from the final, where I remember losing to Alex Krasnoroutskiy of Russia. He’s still around, he’s working now with Svetlana Kuznetsova. But yeah, the match with Djokovic sticks out quite a lot and it’s strange because at the time, when he was eleven years old, he wasn’t yet that good. Once he got to 13, 14 he became really really good.
By Alan Tengrove, Australian Tennis magazine, July 2000:
A new Mary Pierce, more complete as a person and a tennis player, achieved an “impossible dream” at a dramatic French Open.
There were good reasons for Mary Pierce‘s self-pity. A father she loved, but who mistreated her in his obsession to make her a champion. A nervous temperament that often brought her undone. A part-French background that caused her more anguish than joy because she failed to live up to the expectations of a public thirsting for glory.
All changed at Roland Garros when Pierce, the No. 6 seed, became the first French woman to win he national championship since Françoise Durr in 1967. At last she did justice to her considerable talent. She out-hit three-time champion Monica Seles in a quarter-final, tipped out top seed Martina Hingis in a semi, and out-classed fifth seed Conchita Martinez 6-2 7-5 in the final.
With a partially disabled Lindsay Davenport upset in the first round, and an under-prepared Venus Williams eliminated by Arantxa Sanchez Vicario (who later lost to Martinez), there was no doubt Pierce deserved the title. Just as she did the doubles title shared with Hingis. At 25, and in her 11th year as a professional, she played the finest tennis of her career.
It seemed so much more than six years ago that she reached her first French Open final after surprising Steffi Graf. Then, a bundle of nerves, she was no match for Sanchez Vicario.
Seven months later, when she beat Sanchez Vicario in the Australian Open final, anything seemed possible. France hoped she would inherit Graf’s throne, but year after year Pierce was disappointing. For five years she failed to pass the fourth round at Roland Garros. She flopped at other French tournaments.
Her former fans felt let down, were irritated by her mannerisms, and turned against her, teating her with derision. She was overshadowed by younger players, such as Hingis, the Williams sisters and Davenport. And three years ago, disenchanted, she stopped representing her adopted country in the Fed Cup.
To win the French Open was her dream – an impossible dream, it had seemed.
“Everything that’s happened here in the past, everything that I’ve been through, there’s just so many emotions that attach to this tournament,” she said after heer unexpected triumph. “to win is amazing.”
She was 13 when her American father became dissatisfied with the attitude of the USTA and decided to move the family to France, where her mother was born. Pierce hated to leave her school and friends in Florida, but had no choice.
In Paris she was separated from her family and lived in a dormitory at Roland Garros.
“I couldn’t speak French. I didn’t know anybody? I didn’t have any friends and I was by myself,” she recalled. “It was really tough. I probably cried every night, trying to fall asleep. It was tough practicing.”