William Renshaw

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William Renshaw
William Charles Renshaw.jpg
Full name William Charles Renshaw
Country (sports)  United Kingdom
Born (1861-01-03)3 January 1861
Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, England
Died 12 August 1904(1904-08-12) (aged 43)
Swanage, Dorset, England
Height 1.77 m (5 ft 9 12 in)
Plays Right-handed (1-handed backhand)
Int. Tennis HoF 1983 (member page)
Singles
Career titles 23 [1]
Highest ranking No. 1 (1881, Karoly Mazak)[2]
Grand Slam Singles results
Wimbledon W (1881, 1882, 1883, 1884, 1885, 1886, 1889)
Other tournaments
Doubles
Grand Slam Doubles results
Wimbledon W (1884, 1885, 1886, 1888, 1889)
Tennis players William and Ernest Renshaw on a postal card, around 1890
William (L) and Ernest (R) Renshaw

William Charles Renshaw (3 January 1861 – 12 August 1904) was a British tennis player active during the late 19th century who was ranked world No. 1. He won 12 Major titles during his career and was one of the most successful male players in the history of the Wimbledon Championships, winning the singles title seven times, which stood as a record until 2017, and a record six times consecutively from (1881–86). Additionally he won the doubles title five times together with his twin brother Ernest. The right-hander was known for his power and technical ability which put him ahead of competition at the time. He was the first president of the British Lawn Tennis Association (LTA).

Career

Renshaw won a total of twelve Wimbledon titles.[3] Seven of those were in singles, the same number as Pete Sampras and one fewer than Roger Federer. The first six were consecutive, an achievement which has been unequaled to this day (although the five successive wins of Björn Borg and Roger Federer are considered the 'modern' record because in Renshaw's time the reigning champion had automatic entry to next year's final. Since 1922 the reigning champions have had to play in the main draw, making such feats considerably more difficult). In the summer months he would compete in England and Ireland, while competing on the French Riviera during the winter months and practising on a private tennis court he and his brother had built at their own cost.[4] In singles play he played his twin brother Ernest Renshaw three times (1882, 1883 and 1889) in the Wimbledon final, triumphing on all three occasions. He was unable to defend his title in 1887 because of tennis elbow, the first time this injury received public attention, and during his absence took up golf.[4][5][6] The other five titles were in the Gentlemen's doubles, partnering with Ernest. Additionally, he and his brother dominated the sport for many years in a time when the only other Grand Slam was the U.S. Championships, and by custom players did not travel far. The rise in popularity of tennis in this period became known as the 'Renshaw Rush'.[7][8] In 1888 William was elected the first president of the British Lawn Tennis Association (LTA).[4] In 1983, William Renshaw was elected posthumously into the International Tennis Hall of Fame together with his brother.

Death

He died in Swanage, Dorset on 12 August 1904, aged 43, of epileptic convulsions.[9]

Grand Slam finals

Singles (7 titles, 1 runner-up)

Outcome Year Championship Surface Opponent Score
Winner 1881 Wimbledon Grass United Kingdom John Hartley 6–0, 6–1, 6–1
Winner 1882 Wimbledon (2) Grass United Kingdom Ernest Renshaw 6–1, 2–6, 4–6, 6–2, 6–2
Winner 1883 Wimbledon (3) Grass United Kingdom Ernest Renshaw 2–6, 6–3, 6–3, 4–6, 6–3
Winner 1884 Wimbledon (4) Grass United Kingdom Herbert Lawford 6–0, 6–4, 9–7
Winner 1885 Wimbledon (5) Grass United Kingdom Herbert Lawford 7–5, 6–2, 4–6, 7–5
Winner 1886 Wimbledon (6) Grass United Kingdom Herbert Lawford 6–0, 5–7, 6–3, 6–4
Winner 1889 Wimbledon (7) Grass United Kingdom Ernest Renshaw 7–5, 6–2, 4–6, 7–5
Runner-up 1890 Wimbledon Grass United Kingdom Willoughby Hamilton 8–6, 2–6, 6–3, 1–6, 1–6

Doubles (5 titles)

Outcome Year Championship Surface Partner Opponents Score
Winner 1884 Wimbledon Grass United Kingdom Ernest Renshaw United Kingdom Ernest Lewis
United Kingdom E.L. Williams
6–3, 6–1, 1–6, 6–4
Winner 1885 Wimbledon (2) Grass United Kingdom Ernest Renshaw United Kingdom C.E. Farrer
United Kingdom A.J. Stanley
6–3, 6–3, 10–8
Winner 1886 Wimbledon (3) Grass United Kingdom Ernest Renshaw United Kingdom C.E. Farrer
United Kingdom A.J. Stanley
6–3, 6–3, 4–6, 7–5
Winner 1888 Wimbledon (4) Grass United Kingdom Ernest Renshaw United Kingdom Herbert Wilberforce
United Kingdom Patrick Bowes-Lyon
2–6, 1–6, 6–3, 6–4, 6–3
Winner 1889 Wimbledon (5) Grass United Kingdom Ernest Renshaw United Kingdom Ernest Lewis
United Kingdom George Hillyard
6–4, 6–4, 3–6, 0–6, 6–1

Records

All-time

Tournament Since Record accomplished Players matched
Wimbledon Championships 1877 6 consecutive singles titles won (1881–1886) Stands Alone

See also

References

  1. ^ "William Charles Renshaw: Stats". tennisarchives.com. Tennis Archives. Retrieved 9 August 2016. 
  2. ^ Mazak, Karoly (2010). The Concise History of Tennis, p. 9.
  3. ^ Bud Collins (2010). The Bud Collins History of Tennis (2nd ed.). [New York]: New Chapter Press. pp. 414/415, 435, 630. ISBN 978-0942257700. 
  4. ^ a b c Gillmeister, Heiner (1998). Tennis : A Cultural History (Repr. ed.). London: Leicester University Press. pp. 190, 191, 199. ISBN 978-0718501952. 
  5. ^ "Stands Lawn Tennis Where It Did?". Aberdeen Evening Express. British Newspaper Archive. 16 August 1893. (Subscription required (help)). 
  6. ^ "Lawn Tennis – Championship Meeting". Birmingham Daily Post. British Newspaper Archive. 30 June 1891. (Subscription required (help)). 
  7. ^ "History of The All England Club and The Wimbledon Championships". AELTC. Retrieved 18 May 2012. 
  8. ^ "The Start of Something Special". news.bbc.co.uk. BBC. 31 May 2004. Retrieved 18 May 2012. 
  9. ^ "William Renshaw". db4tennis.com. 

External links

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