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Yannick Noah (born 18 May 1960) is a former professional tennis player from France. He won the French Open in 1983, and is currently the captain of both France's Davis Cup and Fed Cup team. During his career, which spanned almost two decades, Noah captured a total of 23 singles titles and 16 doubles titles, reaching a career-high singles ranking of World No. 3 (in July 1986) and attaining the World No. 1 doubles ranking the following month. Since his retirement from the game, Noah has remained in the public eye as a popular music performer and as the co-founder, with his mother, of a charity organization for underprivileged children. Noah is also the father of Joakim Noah of the NBA New York Knicks.

Yannick Noah
Yannick Noah (Davis Cup).jpg
Yannick Noah (1979 Davis Cup)
Country (sports)  France
Born (1960-05-18) 18 May 1960 (age 58)
Sedan, France
Height 1.93 m (6 ft 4 in)
Turned pro 1977
Retired 1996
Plays Right-handed (one-handed backhand)
Prize money $3,440,660
Int. Tennis HoF 2005 (member page)
Singles
Career record 482–212 (69.45%) in Grand Prix, WCT and Grand Slam level, and in Davis Cup
Career titles 23
Highest ranking No. 3 (7 July 1986)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open SF (1990)
French Open W (1983)
Wimbledon 3R (1979, 1985)
US Open QF (1983, 1985, 1989)
Other tournaments
Tour Finals QF (1982)
WCT Finals SF (1988)
Doubles
Career record 213–109 (ATP, Grand Prix, WCT and Grand Slam level, and Davis Cup)
Career titles 16
Highest ranking No. 1 (25 August 1986)
Grand Slam Doubles results
French Open W (1984)
US Open F (1985)
Team competitions
Davis Cup F (1982)

Contents

ChildhoodEdit

Born in the north of France in 1960, Yannick Noah is the son of a Cameroonian footballer, Zacharie Noah, and his French wife Marie-Claire. After a sports injury in 1963, Noah's father returned to Africa with his family. He was living in Cameroon when he made his debut in tennis and was discovered at age 11 by Arthur Ashe and Charlie Pasarell. He soon showed an amazing talent that eventually brought him to the French Tennis Federation's training center in Nice in 1971.

Tennis careerEdit

Noah turned professional in 1977 and won his first top-level singles title in 1978 in Manila.

Noah became France's most prominent tennis hero in 1983, becoming the first Frenchman in 37 years to win the French Open, one of the four Grand Slam singles events. He dropped only one set during the two-week-long tournament, and defeated the defending champion, Sweden's Mats Wilander in straight sets in the final, 6–2, 7–5, 7–6. He remains the last and most recent Frenchman to have won the French Open men's singles title.

Noah won the French Open men's doubles title in 1984 (with compatriot and best friend Henri Leconte). He was also the men's doubles runner-up at the 1985 U.S. Open (with Leconte), and the 1987 French Open (with compatriot Guy Forget). In August 1986, Noah attained the world no. 1 doubles ranking, which he would hold for a total of 19 weeks. At the end of 1986, Noah received the ATP Sportsmanship Award, as voted for by other ATP players.

Yannick reached the quarter-final stage or better on 10 occasions at Grand Slam level.

He notably admitted using marijuana prior to matches in 1981,[1] saying that amphetamines were the real problem in tennis as they were performance-enhancing drugs.

In 1992, Noah received the Legion of Honour medal.

Noah was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2005. He remains France's highest ranked player since the introduction of rankings in 1973.

Noah played on France's Davis Cup team for eleven years, with an overall win–loss record of 39–22 (26–15 in singles, and in 13–7 doubles). In 1982, he was part of the French team which reached the Davis Cup final, where they were defeated 4–1 by the United States.

Davis Cup/Fed Cup captain successEdit

In 1991, Noah captained the French team to its first Davis Cup victory in 59 years, defeating a heavily favoured US team 3–1 in the final.

This feat was repeated in 1996, when Noah coached the French team to defeat Sweden 3–2 in the final held in Malmö.

In 2017, Noah added a third Davis Cup win for France under his guidance as Captain, defeating Belgium in the final in Lille.

In 1997, he also captained France's Fed Cup team to its first ever win of that competition when they defeated the Dutch in the final.

Grand Slam singles tournament timelineEdit

Tournament 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 SR W–L Win %
Grand Slam tournaments
Australian Open A/A 1R A 1R A A A A A NH QF 4R 1R SF 0 / 6 11–6 64.71
French Open 1R 3R 2R 4R QF QF W QF 4R 4R QF 4R 1R 3R 1 / 14 40–13 75.47
Wimbledon A 2R 3R A 1R A A A 3R A 2R A A 1R 0 / 6 6–6 50.00
US Open A 1R 4R 4R 4R 4R QF A QF 3R A 2R QF 2R 0 / 11 28–11 71.79
Win–Loss 0–1 3–4 6–3 6–3 7–3 7–2 11–1 4–1 9–3 5–2 8–3 7–3 4–3 8–4 1 / 37 85–36 70.25

Grand Slam finalsEdit

Singles: 1 (1–0)Edit

Outcome Year Championship Surface Opponent in the final Score in the final
Winner 1983 French Open Clay   Mats Wilander 6–2, 7–5, 7–6(7–3)

Doubles: 3 (1–2)Edit

Outcome Year Championship Surface Partner Opponent in the final Score in the final
Winner 1984 French Open Clay   Henri Leconte   Pavel Složil
  Tomáš Šmíd
6–4, 2–6, 3–6, 6–3, 6–2
Runner-up 1985 US Open Hard   Henri Leconte   Ken Flach
  Robert Seguso
7–6(7–5), 6–7(1–7), 6–7(6–8), 0–6
Runner-up 1987 French Open Clay   Guy Forget   Anders Järryd
  Robert Seguso
7–6(7–5), 7–6(7–2), 3–6, 4–6, 2–6

Career finalsEdit

Singles (23 titles, 13 runners-up)Edit

Outcome No. Year Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Runner-up 1. 1978 Nice, France Clay   José Higueras 3–6, 4–6, 4–6
Winner 1. 1978 Manila, Philippines Clay   Peter Feigl 7–6, 6–0
Winner 2. 1978 Calcutta, India Clay   Pascal Portes 6–3, 6–2
Winner 3. 1979 Nancy, France Hard (i)   Jean-Louis Haillet 6–2, 5–7, 6–1, 7–5
Winner 4. 1979 Madrid, Spain Clay   Manuel Orantes 6–3, 6–7, 6–3, 6–2
Winner 5. 1979 Bordeaux, France Clay   Harold Solomon 6–0, 6–7, 6–1, 1–6, 6–4
Runner-up 2. 1980 Rome, Italy Clay   Guillermo Vilas 0–6, 4–6, 4–6
Winner 6. 1981 Richmond WCT, U.S. Carpet   Ivan Lendl 6–1, 3–1, ret.
Winner 7. 1981 Nice, France Clay   Mario Martinez 6–4, 6–2
Runner-up 3. 1981 Gstaad, Switzerland Clay   Wojtek Fibak 1–6, 6–7
Winner 8. 1982 La Quinta, U.S. Hard   Ivan Lendl 6–3, 2–6, 7–5
Runner-up 4. 1982 Nice, France Clay   Balázs Taróczy 2–6, 6–3, 11–13
Winner 9. 1982 South Orange, U.S. Clay   Raúl Ramírez 6–3, 7–6
Winner 10. 1982 Basel, Switzerland Hard (i)   Mats Wilander 6–4, 6–2, 6–3
Winner 11. 1982 Toulouse, France Hard (i)   Tomáš Šmíd 6–3, 6–2
Runner-up 5. 1983 Lisbon, Portugal Clay   Mats Wilander 6–2, 6–7(2–7), 4–6
Winner 12. 1983 Madrid, Spain Clay   Henrik Sundström 3–6, 6–0, 6–2, 6–4
Winner 13. 1983 Hamburg, Germany Clay   José Higueras 3–6, 7–5, 6–2, 6–0
Winner 14. 1983 French Open, Paris Clay   Mats Wilander 6–2, 7–5, 7–6(7–3)
Runner-up 6. 1984 La Quinta, U.S. Hard   Jimmy Connors 2–6, 7–6(9–7), 3–6
Runner-up 7. 1985 Memphis, U.S. Carpet   Stefan Edberg 1–6, 0–6
Winner 15. 1985 Rome, Italy Clay   Miloslav Mečíř 6–3, 3–6, 6–2, 7–6(7–4)
Winner 16. 1985 Washington, D.C., U.S. Clay   Martín Jaite 6–4, 6–3
Winner 17. 1985 Toulouse, France Hard (i)   Tomáš Šmíd 6–4, 6–4
Runner-up 8. 1985 Basel, Switzerland Hard (i)   Stefan Edberg 7–6, 4–6, 6–7, 1–6
Runner-up 9. 1986 La Quinta, U.S. Hard   Joakim Nyström 1–6, 3–6, 2–6
Runner-up 10. 1986 Monte Carlo, Monaco Clay   Joakim Nyström 3–6, 2–6
Winner 18. 1986 Forest Hills, U.S. Clay   Guillermo Vilas 7–6(7–3), 6–0
Runner-up 11. 1986 Basel, Switzerland Hard (i)   Stefan Edberg 6–7(5–7), 2–6, 7–6(9–7), 6–7(5–7)
Winner 19. 1986 Wembley, England Carpet   Jonas Svensson 6–2, 6–3, 6–7(12–14), 4–6, 7–5
Winner 20. 1987 Lyon, France Carpet   Joakim Nyström 6–4, 7–5
Runner-up 12. 1987 Forest Hills, U.S. Clay   Andrés Gómez 4–6, 6–7(5–7), 6–7(1–7)
Winner 21. 1987 Basel, Switzerland Hard (i)   Ronald Agénor 7–6(8–6), 6–4, 6–4
Winner 22. 1988 Milan, Italy Carpet   Jimmy Connors 4–4, ret.
Runner-up 13. 1989 Indian Wells, U.S. Hard   Miloslav Mečíř 6–3, 6–2, 1–6, 2–6, 3–6
Winner 23. 1990 Sydney Outdoor, Australia Hard   Carl-Uwe Steeb 5–7, 6–3, 6–4

Doubles (16 titles, 9 runners-up)Edit

Outcome No. Year Tournament Surface Partner Opponents Score
Runner-up 1. 1978 Calcutta, India Clay   Gilles Moretton   Sashi Menon
  Sherwood Stewart
6–7, 4–6
Winner 1. 1981 Nice, France Clay   Pascal Portes   Chris Lewis
  Pavel Složil
4–6, 6–3, 6–4
Winner 2. 1981 Paris, France Hard (i)   Ilie Năstase   Andrew Jarrett
  Jonathan Smith
6–4, 6–4
Winner 3. 1982 Nice, France Clay   Henri Leconte   Paul McNamee
  Balázs Taróczy
5–7, 6–4, 6–3
Winner 4. 1982 Basel, Switzerland Hard (i)   Henri Leconte   Fritz Buehning
  Pavel Složil
6–2, 6–2
Runner-up 2. 1982 Toulouse, France Hard (i)   Jean-Louis Haillet   Pavel Složil
  Tomáš Šmíd
4–6, 4–6
Runner-up 3. 1983 Monte Carlo, Monaco Clay   Henri Leconte   Heinz Günthardt
  Balázs Taróczy
2–6, 4–6
Runner-up 4. 1984 Philadelphia, U.S. Carpet   Henri Leconte   Peter Fleming
  John McEnroe
2–6, 3–6
Winner 5. 1984 French Open, Paris Clay   Henri Leconte   Pavel Složil
  Tomáš Šmíd
6–4, 2–6, 3–6, 6–3, 6–2
Winner 6. 1985 Chicago, U.S. Carpet   Johan Kriek   Ken Flach
  Robert Seguso
3–6, 4–6, 7–5, 6–1, 6–4
Runner-up 5. 1985 U.S. Open, New York Hard   Henri Leconte   Ken Flach
  Robert Seguso
7–6, 6–7, 6–7, 0–6
Runner-up 6. 1986 La Quinta, U.S. Hard   Sherwood Stewart   Guy Forget
  Peter Fleming
4–6, 3–6
Winner 7. 1986 Monte Carlo, Monaco Clay   Guy Forget   Joakim Nyström
  Mats Wilander
6–4, 3–6, 6–4
Winner 8. 1986 Rome, Italy Clay   Guy Forget   Mark Edmondson
  Sherwood Stewart
7–6, 6–2
Winner 9. 1986 Basel, Switzerland Hard (i)   Guy Forget   Jan Gunnarsson
  Tomáš Šmíd
7–6, 6–4
Runner-up 7. 1986 Masters Doubles, London Carpet   Guy Forget   Stefan Edberg
  Anders Järryd
3–6, 6–7, 3–6
Winner 10. 1987 Lyon, France Carpet   Guy Forget   Kelly Jones
  David Pate
4–6, 6–3, 6–4
Winner 11. 1987 Indian Wells, U.S. Hard   Guy Forget   Boris Becker
  Eric Jelen
6–4, 7–6
Winner 12. 1987 Forest Hills, U.S. Clay   Guy Forget   Gary Donnelly
  Peter Fleming
4–6, 6–4, 6–1
Winner 13. 1987 Rome, Italy Clay   Guy Forget   Miloslav Mečíř
  Tomáš Šmíd
6–2, 6–7, 6–3
Runner-up 8. 1987 French Open, Paris Clay   Guy Forget   Anders Järryd
  Robert Seguso
7–6, 7–6, 3–6, 4–6, 2–6
Winner 14. 1987 London/Queen's Club, England Grass   Guy Forget   Rick Leach
  Tim Pawsat
6–4, 6–4
Winner 15. 1988 Orlando, U.S. Hard   Guy Forget   Sherwood Stewart
  Kim Warwick
6–4, 6–4
Winner 16. 1990 Nice, France Clay   Alberto Mancini   Marcelo Filippini
  Horst Skoff
6–4, 7–6
Runner-up 9. 1990 Bordeaux, France Clay   Mansour Bahrami   Tomás Carbonell
  Libor Pimek
3–6, 7–6, 2–6

Music careerEdit

Yannick Noah
 
Noah performing at a concert in 2011
Background information
Genres Pop
Occupation(s) Singer
Instruments Vocals
Years active 1991 – present
Website www.yannicknoah.com

Since retiring from playing tennis, Noah developed a career as a popular singer, performing throughout Europe. He began his music career in 1991 with the album Black or What, featuring the popular track "Saga Africa", which he made the stadium sing with his players after the famous Davis Cup final win. In 1993, he released the album Urban Tribu with the single "Get on Back", followed by the album Zam Zam in 1998.

With the encouragement of his manager Jean-Pierre Weiller, his musical career got a great boost in 2000 with his self-titled 4th album Yannick Noah, written by Erick Benzi and Robert Goldman. The single "Simon Papa Tara" was written by Robert Goldman. The album also contained songs by Bob Marley and the group Téléphone. In 2003, Noah released Pokhara that sold 1,295,000 copies in France.[2]

In October 2006, the album Charango was a major hit, selling 1,275,000 copies in France[3] and culminating in a one-year tour to promote the album. French radio played the singles "Donne-moi une vie" and "Aux arbres citoyens" from the album extensively.

In 2005, Noah performed at Bob Geldof's Live 8 concert, a fundraiser aimed at alleviating poverty in Africa.

On 21 July 2009, Noah made his U.S. live debut, headlining a concert in front of a packed house at the popular free outdoor performing arts festival in New York City, Central Park SummerStage. The performance was part of France's global music celebration Fête de la Musique.

In 2010, Yannick made a comeback with the release of Frontières, his eighth album, containing the single "Angela", a tribute to Angela Davis. It also contained a duet with Aṣa in "Hello". On 25 September 2010, he filled the Stade de France for an exceptional concert that was attended by close to 80,000 spectators.

CharityEdit

Noah is very active in charity work. He supports Enfants de la Terre, a charity created and run by his mother, Marie-Claire, in 1988.

Noah also founded Fête le Mur in 1996, a tennis charity and adaptation for underprivileged children, specially in the poor areas and the banlieues. It is presided by Noah himself.

He is also a spokesman for Appel des Enfants pour l'Environnement that was started by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).

He took part in singing with Les Enfoirés to help Les Restos du Cœur. He also took part in telethons and sponsored the Téléthon 2005.

He also sponsors the Association Terre-des-Hommes in Massongex (Suisse) and donated proceeds of his 2008 concert of Grands Gamins, to Sol En Si, an AIDS charity.

Partly because of his huge involvement in a number of charities, he topped the list of the most favourite French personalities according to a joint survey of Ifop and Le Journal du Dimanche in 2007.

Personal lifeEdit

Noah's father, Zacharie Noah, was a former professional Cameroonian football star who won the French Cup with Sedan in 1961. His mother, Marie-Claire, is a former captain of France's basketball team and teacher. Noah has five children, of whom two were from his first marriage to Cécilia Rodhe (Miss Sweden 1978 and now a sculptor): Joakim (born in 1985) and Yelena (born in 1986). Joakim plays basketball for the New York Knicks and for the French team. Yelena is a model, already famous in the world of fashion. They don't live in France but in the U.S. With his second wife, the British model Heather Stewart-Whyte, Noah has two daughters: Elijah (1996) and Jénayé (1997). Now he is married to French TV producer Isabelle Camus, with whom he has a son named Joalukas (born in 2004).

Noah is also the owner of a restaurant in Saint Barthélemy in the French West Indies called Do Brazil.

Problems with the French fiscal authorities

On 15 July 1996, the French fiscal authorities demanded payment of 6,807,701 francs in back taxes for 1993–1994. The Paris administrative tribunal court confirmed the decision alleging that Noah kept three non-declared bank accounts in Switzerland, the Netherlands and the United States. Noah disputed the court decision as unconstitutional.[citation needed]

DiscographyEdit

 
Yannick Noah, Rennes, 22 January 2011

AlbumsEdit

Year Album Charts Notes Sales
FR
[4]
BEL
(Vl)
BEL
(Wa)
SWI
1990 Saga Africa
1991 Black & What Includes "Saga Africa"
1993 Urban Tribu
1998 Zaam Zam
2000 Yannick Noah 1  – 2 26
2002 Yannick Noah 16  – 40 82
2003 Pokhara 1  – 2 23 France: 1,295,000[5]
2003 Métisse(s) 2  – 4 28
2006 Charango 1  – 1 7 (including single
"Aux arbres citoyens")
France: 1,275,000[6]
2010 Frontières 1  – 1 4
2012 Hommage 1  – 1 19
2012 Combats ordinaires 1 162 2 20
Rereleases
  • 2004: Yannick Noah / Live (2 CDs – FR #134)
  • 2010: Charango / Pokhara (2 Cds – FR #103)

SinglesEdit

Year Single Charts Certification Album
FR[4] BEL/
Wa
SWI
1991 "Saga Africa (ambiance secousse)" 2 Saga Africa
1991 "Don't Stay (Far Away Baby)" 39
2000 "Simon Papa Tara" 12 32
2001 "La voix des sages (No More Fighting)" 3 16
2002 "Les lionnes" 16
2002 "Jamafrica" 52
2003 "Si tu savais" 22 31 77
2004 "Ose" 13 9 41
2004 "Mon Eldorado (du soleil...)" 19 23 59
2005 "Métis(se)"
(with Disiz La Peste)
11 22 41 Métis(se)
2006 "Donne-moi une vie" 8 5 46
2007 "Aux arbres citoyens" 1 2 41 Charango
2007 "Destination ailleurs" 8 19 Charango
2011 "Ça me regarde" 80 34 Frontières
2012 "Redemption Song" 48 33
2014 "On court" 47 42

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit