Thursday, November 19, 2009

Jack Kramer Dead at 88

(Photo Credit: New York Times)
Saturday, September 12, 2009

Jack Kramer died today in Los Angeles, CA with his family. He was known for his "big game": the serve-and-volley style.

In the days of amateur tennis, Jack Kramer was key to helping to promote the pro game and helped to pave the way for the Open era in 1968, a concept he long pursued. The landscape of today's modern game would not be what it is without him.

As for his tennis game, it was world class, winning the US Nationals (now US Open) twice, and Wimbledon and two winning Davis Cup teams.

“He put more continuing pressure on an opponent than any other player I ever saw or played against,” Ted Schroeder, Kramer’s partner for two United States doubles championships, told The Associated Press in 2002. “That goes all the way back to Bill Tilden.”

His serve was exceptional for its consistency. It was said he could toss the ball to the same spot a 100 times. His follow-up penetrating forehand approach shot to the net made his transition game one of the best ever in tennis.

"Kramer competed on his pro tour into the late 1950’s, when injuries forced his retirement, but he continued to run it until 1962. He was named to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1968, and a panel of tennis experts voted him as the fifth-best player of all time in 1969."

Well done Mr. Kramer! Thank you.

PS Please check out Joel Drucker's
ESPN piece on Jack Kramer:
Tennis' Most Important Person

One Last Look at the Jack Kramer Serve

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