William 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 twelve Major titles during his career. A right-hander, he was known for his power and technical ability which put him ahead of competition at the time. Renshaw shared the all-time male record of seven Wimbledon singles titles with American Pete Sampras until 2017 when Roger Federer won his eighth singles title.[3] His six consecutive singles titles (1881–86) is an all-time record. Additionally he won the doubles title five times together with his twin brother Ernest. William Renshaw was the first president of the British Lawn Tennis Association (LTA).

William Renshaw
William Charles Renshaw.jpg
Full nameWilliam Charles Renshaw
Country (sports) United Kingdom
Born(1861-01-03)3 January 1861
Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, England
Died12 August 1904(1904-08-12) (aged 43)
Swanage, Dorset, England
Height1.77 m (5 ft 9 12 in)
PlaysRight-handed (1-handed backhand)
Int. Tennis HoF1983 (member page)
Singles
Career record22–3
Career titles23 [1]
Highest rankingNo. 1 (1881, Karoly Mazak)[2]
Grand Slam Singles results
WimbledonW (1881, 1882, 1883, 1884, 1885, 1886, 1889)
Other tournaments
Doubles
Grand Slam Doubles results
WimbledonW (1884, 1885, 1886, 1888, 1889)
Tennis players William and Ernest Renshaw on a postal card, around 1890
William (L) and Ernest (R) Renshaw

CareerEdit

Renshaw won a total of twelve Wimbledon titles.[4] Seven of those were in singles, which was a record shared with Pete Sampras which was surpassed in 2017 by Roger Federer who won his eighth title. The first six were consecutive, an achievement which has been unequaled to this day [5]. 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.[6] 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.[6][7][8] 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'.[9][10] In 1888 William was elected the first president of the British Lawn Tennis Association (LTA).[6] In 1983, William Renshaw was elected posthumously into the International Tennis Hall of Fame together with his brother.[11]

DeathEdit

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

Grand Slam finalsEdit

Singles (7 titles, 1 runner-up)Edit

Result Year Championship Surface Opponent Score
Win 1881 Wimbledon Grass   John Hartley 6–0, 6–1, 6–1
Win 1882 Wimbledon (2) Grass   Ernest Renshaw 6–1, 2–6, 4–6, 6–2, 6–2
Win 1883 Wimbledon (3) Grass   Ernest Renshaw 2–6, 6–3, 6–3, 4–6, 6–3
Win 1884 Wimbledon (4) Grass   Herbert Lawford 6–0, 6–4, 9–7
Win 1885 Wimbledon (5) Grass   Herbert Lawford 7–5, 6–2, 4–6, 7–5
Win 1886 Wimbledon (6) Grass   Herbert Lawford 6–0, 5–7, 6–3, 6–4
Win 1889 Wimbledon (7) Grass   Ernest Renshaw 6–4, 6–1, 3–6, 6–0
Loss 1890 Wimbledon Grass   Willoughby Hamilton 8–6, 2–6, 6–3, 1–6, 1–6

Doubles (5 titles)Edit

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

RecordsEdit

All-timeEdit

Tournament Since Record accomplished Players matched
Wimbledon Championships 1877 6 consecutive singles titles won (1881–1886) Stands Alone [13]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  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. ^ https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/16/sports/tennis/wimbledon-roger-federer-marin-cilic.html
  4. ^ Bud Collins (2010). The Bud Collins History of Tennis (2nd ed.). [New York]: New Chapter Press. pp. 414/415, 435, 630. ISBN 978-0942257700.
  5. ^ "William Renshaw: Class of 1983 Master Class". International Tennis Hall of Fame. ITHF. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  6. ^ a b c Gillmeister, Heiner (1998). Tennis : A Cultural History (Repr. ed.). London: Leicester University Press. pp. 190, 191, 199. ISBN 978-0718501952.
  7. ^ "Stands Lawn Tennis Where It Did?". Aberdeen Evening Express. British Newspaper Archive. 16 August 1893.
  8. ^ "Lawn Tennis – Championship Meeting". Birmingham Daily Post. British Newspaper Archive. 30 June 1891.
  9. ^ "History of The All England Club and The Wimbledon Championships". AELTC. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
  10. ^ "The Start of Something Special". news.bbc.co.uk. BBC. 31 May 2004. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
  11. ^ "Hall of Famers – William Renshaw". International Tennis Hall of Fame.
  12. ^ "William Renshaw". db4tennis.com.
  13. ^ Roopanarine, Les (6 July 2008). "Wimbledon 2008: Nadal clinches first Wimbledon title after Centre Court epic". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 October 2017.

External linksEdit