Hall of Fame ring presented to Wilander
NEWPORT, R.I. — Swedish tennis great Mats Wilander burst onto the pro tennis scene in 1982 when he upset four seeded players to win the French Open as an unseeded 17-year-old. He went on to achieve world No. 1 status and to win an additional six Grand Slam singles titles and one doubles title, among many other career successes. In recognition of his accomplishments, Wilander was enshrined in the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2002. In a special ceremony on Sunday at the Delray Beach International Tennis Championships this important achievement was celebrated once again with the presentation of his official Hall of Fame ring.
“As a world Number 1 player, 8-time Grand Slam champion, and Davis Cup star, Mats achieved incredible success during his playing career, for which he was awarded the highest honor in the sport in 2002 — enshrinement in the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Today, it is wonderful to see him continue to share his love of the game as a Champions Tour player and through his innovative tennis company, Wilander on Wheels,” said Christopher E. Clouser, chairman of the International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum. “His contributions to tennis have a permanent place in the history of the sport, and we are pleased to be able to recognize this through presentation of this special ring, which only the best tennis players and contributors in the world will have the honor of wearing.”
Known for an incredible mental toughness, Wilander’s grace under pressure enabled him to flourish at the highest levels of the game. After a successful junior career, Wilander first made his mark on the pro tour in 1982, when he captured his first Grand Slam victory at the French Open. In 1988, he won three of the four major singles titles and finished the year as world No. 1. He was a driving force behind Sweden’s run of seven consecutive Davis Cup finals in the 1980s, and a member of three championship teams. In all, Wilander won 33 singles titles and seven doubles titles during his career.
Since retirement, Wilander has stayed highly active in tennis. He is a competitor at ATP Champions Tour events. In recent years, he has been touring the United States in a Winnebago and hosting tennis fantasy camps and lessons at clubs nationwide through his company, Wilander on Wheels.
The personalized rings are being presented to Hall of Famers at tennis events around the world over the next few years as a special symbol of their Hall of Fame induction. The rings bear a green stone set in gold, to complement the Hall of Fame’s brand colors, and are etched with each honoree’s name and the Hall of Fame logo crest. The rings have been generously underwritten by The Bruce T. Halle Family of Scottsdale, Arizona.
Additional International Tennis Hall of Fame rings will be presented at tennis events around the world in the coming months. Located in Newport, Rhode Island, the International Tennis Hall of Fame is a non-profit institution dedicated to preserving the history of tennis and honoring the game’s greatest heroes. Since 1955, the International Tennis Hall of Fame has inducted 224 individuals from 19 different countries-a testament to the global reach of the game. In addition, the Hall of Fame provides a landmark for tennis enthusiasts, offering an extensive museum that chronicles the history of the sport and its stars, historic grass tennis courts that date back to 1880 and are open to the public, an ATP World Tour tournament and the annual Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony in July, and numerous public events year-round. To learn more, visit tennisfame.com.
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