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József Asbóth (Hungarian: [ˈjoːʒɛf ˈɒʒboːt]; 18 September 1917 – 22 September 1986) was a Hungarian male tennis player. Born in a family of railway workers,[2] he is best remembered for being the first Hungarian tennis and the first player from Eastern Europe to win a Grand Slam singles title, at the 1947 French Open (where as fifth seed he beat Yvon Petra, Tom Brown and Eric Sturgess).[3] As of today, he is still the only Hungarian male player who won a Grand Slam title in singles. Asboth was a clay court specialist who was good at keeping the ball in play.[4] Asbóth also reached the semifinals at Wimbledon in 1948 (beating Sturgess and Brown before losing to John Bromwich).[5] Hungary's Communist government had let him leave the country only after the personal warrant of the Swedish King Gustaf V that Asbóth would return to his homeland and wasn't going to emigrate.[2] In 1941, he was a member of the Hungarian team that won the Central European Cup. Asbóth was ranked World No. 8 by John Olliff of The Daily Telegraph in 1948 (and No. 9 in 1947).[1]

József Asbóth
Country (sports) Hungary
Born(1917-09-18)18 September 1917
Szombathely, Austria-Hungary
Died22 September 1986(1986-09-22) (aged 69)
München, West Germany
Turned pro1939 (amateur tour)
PlaysRight-handed (one-handed backhand)
Highest rankingNo. 8 (1948, John Olliff)[1]
Grand Slam Singles results
French OpenW (1947)
WimbledonSF (1948)
Mixed doubles
Grand Slam Mixed Doubles results
French OpenSF (1947)

His Davis Cup record was 24 wins and 17 losses and he won the Hungarian National Tennis Championships 13 times.[6]

After his career, he became responsible for the next generation of tennis players at the Belgian Tennis Federation. He later became a trainer in Munich.

In 1993 a street was named after Asbóth in Szombathely, the city where he was born.[7]


Grand Slam finalsEdit

Singles (1 title)Edit

Outcome Year Championship Surface Opponent Score
Winner 1947 French Championships Clay   Eric Sturgess 8–6, 7–5, 6–4


  1. ^ a b United States Lawn Tennis Association (1972). Official Encyclopedia of Tennis (First Edition), p. 426.
  2. ^ a b Lass, Gábor (2011-06-29). "A magyar tenisz végvára" [Last resort of Hungarian tennis]. (in Hungarian). Budapest, Hungary: Magyar Demokrata. Archived from the original on 2013-07-28. Retrieved 2012-02-01.
  3. ^ "French Open 1947".
  4. ^ "Jozsef Asboth".
  5. ^ "Wimbledon 1948".
  6. ^ Árvay, Sándor (2009-01-05). "Bajnokaink" [Our champions] (in Hungarian). Budapest, Hungary: Magyar Tenisz Szövetség [Hungarian Tennis Association]. Retrieved December 7, 2010.
  7. ^ "Asbóth József" (in Hungarian). Webpage of the city of Szombathely, Hungary. Archived from the original on 2007-12-09. Retrieved 2008-03-02.

External linksEdit