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Sarah Virginia Wade, OBE (born 10 July 1945) is an English former tennis player. She won three Grand Slam singles titles and four Grand Slam doubles titles. She won the women's singles title at Wimbledonmarker in the tournament's centenary year on 1 July 1977, the last time a Briton has won a singles title at the tournament. Incidentally she is also the last Briton to have won a Grand Slam singles title.

Early life

Born in Bournemouthmarker in Englandmarker, Wade learned to play tennis in South Africa, where her parents moved when she was one year old. Her father was the Archdeacon of Durbanmarker. When Wade was 15, the family moved back to England and she went to Tunbridge Wells Girls' Grammar Schoolmarker and Talbot Heath Schoolmarker. She went on to study mathematics and physics at the University of Sussexmarker, graduating in 1966.

Tennis career

Wade's tennis career spanned the end of the amateur era and the start of the open era. In 1968, she scored two notable firsts. As an amateur, she won the inaugural open tennis competition — the British Hard Court Open at Bournemouth. She turned down the US$720 first prize. Five months later, she had become a professional and captured the women's singles title at the first US Openmarker (and prize-money of US$6,000)($ in current dollar terms), defeating Billie Jean King in the final.

Wade's second Grand Slam singles title came in 1972 at the Australian Openmarker. She defeated Evonne Goolagong Cawley in the final 6–4, 6–4.

Wade's most notable victory came at Wimbledonmarker in 1977. It was the sixteenth year in which Wade had played at Wimbledon, and she made her first appearance in the final by beating defending champion Chris Evert in a semifinal 6–2, 4–6, 6–1. In the final, she faced Betty Stöve. Not only was 1977 the 100-year anniversary of the founding of the Wimbledon Championships, but it was also the 25th year of the reign (Silver Jubilee) of Queen Elizabeth II, and the Queen attended the championships for the first time in a quarter-century to watch the LADIES final. In the final, Wade beat Stöve in three sets to claim the title, nine days short of her 32nd birthday. Wade received the trophy from the Queen, and the Centre Courtmarker crowd burst into a chorus of "For She's a Jolly Good Fellow!" to celebrate her triumph.

Wade also won four Grand Slam women's doubles titles partnering Margaret Court – two at the US Open, one at the Australian Open, and one at the French Openmarker.

Wade was coached by Jerry Teeguarden, father of the professional player Pam Teeguarden.

Over her career, Wade won 55 professional singles titles and amassed US$1,542,278 in career prize money. She was ranked in the world's top-10 continuously from 1967 through 1979. Her career spanned a total of 26 years. She retired from singles at the end of 1985 and from doubles at the end of 1986.

Since 1981, Wade has commented on tennis events for the BBC.

In 1982, Wade became the first woman to be elected to the Wimbledon Committee.

In 1983, at the age of 37, she won the Italian Openmarker women's doubles title partnered by Virginia Ruzici of Romaniamarker.

The 24 times that Wade played in the women's singles tournament at Wimbledon is an all-time record.

In 1986, she was awarded the OBE.

In 1989, Wade was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Famemarker.

Grand Slam singles finals (3)

Wins (3)

Year Championship Opponent in final Score in final
1968 US Openmarker Billie Jean King 6–4, 6–2
1972 Australian Openmarker Evonne Goolagong Cawley 6–4, 6–4
1977 Wimbledonmarker Betty Stöve 4–6, 6–3, 6–1

Grand Slam women's doubles finals (10)

Wins (4)

Year Championship Partner Opponents in final Score in final
1973 Australian Openmarker Margaret Court Kerry Harris
Kerry Melville Reid
6–4, 6–4
1973 French Openmarker Margaret Court Françoise Durr
Betty Stöve
6–2, 6–3
1973 US Openmarker Margaret Court Billie Jean King
Rosemary Casals
3–6, 6–3, 7–5
1975 US Open (2) Margaret Court Billie Jean King
Rosemary Casals
7–5, 2–6, 7–6

Runner-ups (6)

Year Championship Partner Opponents in final Score in final
1969 US Openmarker Margaret Court Françoise Durr
Darlene Hard
0–6, 6–3, 6–4
1970 Wimbledonmarker Françoise Durr Billie Jean King
Rosemary Casals
6–2, 6–3
1970 US Open (2) Rosemary Casals Margaret Court
Judy Tegart Dalton
6–3, 6–4
1972 US Open (3) Margaret Court Françoise Durr
Betty Stöve
6–3, 1–6, 6–3
1976 US Open (4) Olga Morozova Delina Boshoff
Ilana Kloss
6–1, 6–4
1979 French Openmarker Françoise Durr Betty Stove
Wendy Turnbull
3–6, 7–5, 6–4

Singles titles (55)

Bold indicates a Grand Slam title
  • 1968 - US Openmarker, Bloemfontein, Bournemouth, East London, Dewar Cup-Crystal Palace
  • 1969 - Cape Town, Hoylake, Dewar-Perth, Dewar-Stalybridge, Dewar-Aberavon, Dewar-Crystal Palace, East London
  • 1970 - German Indoors, West Berlin Open, Irish Open, Stalybridge, Aberavon
  • 1971 - Cape Town, Catania Open, Rome, Newport-Wales, Cincinnati, Dewar-Billingham, Dewar-Aberavon, Dewar Cup Final-London, Clean Air Classic
  • 1972 - Australian Openmarker, VS Indoors-Mass., Merion, Buenos Aires
  • 1973 - Dallas, Bournemouth, Dewar-Aberavon, Dewar-Edinburgh, Dewar-Billingham, Dewar Cup Final-Albert Hall
  • 1974 - VS Chicago, Bournemouth, VS Phoenix, Dewar-Edinburgh, Dewar Cup-London
  • 1975 - VS Dallas, VS Philadelphia, Paris Indoors, Eastbourne, Dewar Cup, Stockholm
  • 1976 - U.S. Indoor Championships, Dewar Cup
  • 1977 - Wimbledonmarker, World Invitational Hilton Head, Tokyo Sillook
  • 1978 - Mahwah, Tokyo Sillook, Florida Open

Grand Slam singles tournament timeline

Tournament 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 Career SR
Australiamarker A A A A A A A A A A W QF A A A A / A A A A A A 2R 2R 2R 1 / 5
Francemarker A A A A A 4R A 2R QF 1R QF 3R 2R A A A A 2R 3R 4R 3R 1R 1R 2R 0 / 14
Wimbledonmarker 2R 2R 2R 4R 2R QF 1R 3R 4R 4R QF QF SF QF SF W SF QF 4R 2R 2R QF 3R 3R 1 / 24
United Statesmarker A A 4R 2R QF 4R W SF SF A QF QF 2R SF 2R QF 3R QF 3R 3R 1R 2R 2R A 1 / 20
SR 0 / 1 0 / 1 0 / 2 0 / 2 0 / 2 0 / 3 1 / 2 0 / 3 0 / 3 0 / 2 1 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 3 0 / 2 0 / 2 1 / 2 0 / 2 0 / 3 0 / 3 0 / 3 0 / 3 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 3 3 / 63

A = did not participate in the tournament.

SR = the ratio of the number of singles tournaments won to the number of those tournaments played.

Note: The Australian Open was held twice in 1977, in January and December.

See also


  1. Sarah Virginia Wade "Ginny"

External links

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