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Gullikson to retire from full-time coaching

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. - The USTA today announced that USTA Lead National Coach Tom Gullikson is retiring from full-time coaching with USTA Player Development. Gullikson, the former U.S. Davis Cup captain who has led Player Development’s Team USA - Pro Men’s division since it was created last year, will stay on until June 2.

“It’s been a great run,” Gullikson said. “Tennis has been a real labor of love for me. I’ve never really considered it a job, either the playing or the coaching, because it’s something I’ve loved since I hit my very first ball at 5 years old with my brother Tim on the public courts of La Crosse, Wisconsin. I think tennis is in my DNA, and certainly American tennis is always going to be a part of who I am and what I’ve been. I’m really excited about the future of American tennis, both on the men’s and women’s sides. I think we’ve got a lot of great young players, and we’ve got some great leadership with Martin Blackman and Brian Boland, so I think tennis is in good shape right now in the U.S., and we’re only going to get better.”

Gullikson began coaching with the USTA in 1988, as one of the very first coaches in the USTA Player Development program, and he would go on to guide Jim Courier, Todd Martin, MaliVai Washington and Jennifer Capriati, among others. He later served as the program’s Director of Coaching from 1997-2001. Gullikson was the U.S. Davis Cup captain from 1994-99, leading the 1995 team to the Davis Cup title, and was the men’s coach at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, where he helped Andre Agassi win the men’s singles gold medal.

As a player, Gullikson captured 16 career doubles titles - 10 with identical twin brother, Tim, with whom he also reached the Wimbledon doubles final in 1983. In addition, Gullikson also won the US Open mixed doubles title in 1984, with Manuela Maleeva, and peaked at No. 4 in the world in doubles.

“Gully is cherished all over the tennis world for his wisdom, humility and genuine kindness towards people,” said USTA Player Development General Manager Martin Blackman. “Three generations of American male and female champions consider Gully to be their coach, mentor and friend, and he has taught and guided players, coaches and parents at every level of our sport. Gully has not only been an outstanding ambassador for tennis, but also an inspirational force. Captain Gullikson epitomizes the values of Team USA, and his legacy will be seen in generations to come.”

In January, USTA Player Development relocated its headquarters from Boca Raton, Fla., to the USTA National Campus at Lake Nona in Orlando, where its adidas Performance Center features eight outdoor hard courts, six European red clay courts and six indoor hard courts, as well as a state of the art athletic training area and a player lodge, which can house up to 40 players participating in Player Development programs. Additionally, the National Campus features a ‘Team USA’ area, where coaches and players from each of the USTA’s 17 sections can utilize to work collaboratively with Player Development.

The USTA is the national governing body for the sport of tennis in the U.S. and the leader in promoting and developing the growth of tennis at every level — from local communities to the highest level of the professional game. A not-for-profit organization with more than 715,000 members, it invests 100% of its proceeds in growing the game. It owns and operates the US Open, the highest-attended annual sporting event in the world, and launched the US Open Series, linking seven summer WTA and ATP World Tour tournaments to the US Open. In addition, it owns approximately 90 Pro Circuit events throughout the U.S. and selects the teams for the Davis Cup, Fed Cup, Olympic and Paralympic Games. The USTA’s philanthropic entity, the USTA Foundation, provides grants and scholarships and helps under-resourced youth and individuals with disabilities, and supports wounded, ill and injured service members, veterans and their families. For more information on the USTA, log on to usta.com, “like” the official Facebook page, facebook.com/usta, or follow @usta on Twitter.

 

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