Past US Open Champions Maria Bueno, Dick Savitt and Vic Seixas presented Hall of Fame Rings in NYC
Brazilian tennis superstar Maria Bueno, who dominated the sport in the 1950s and 1960s and Americans Dick Savitt and Vic Seixas, who both captured multiple Grand Slam victories in the 1950s, have achieved immense success in tennis and are among the game's most elite players and legendary champions. In recognition of their achievements all three were presented the highest honor in the sport in the 1970s- induction to the International Tennis Hall of Fame. In special ceremonies in New York last week during the US Open, this important achievement was celebrated once again when Bueno, Savitt and Seixas were presented their official Hall of Fame rings.
"With an incredible 19 Grand Slam titles to her name, Maria Bueno is not only a Brazilian hero, but she is undoubtedly one tennis' greatest competitors and ambassadors. Similarly, Dick Savitt and Vic Seixas captured multiple Grand Slams and earned world No. 1 and No. 2 rankings. As Hall of Famers, Maria, Dick and Vic are already among an elite group of tennis legends. We are pleased to be able to recognize this achievement with this special ring, which only the most successful and influential individuals in tennis will have the honor of wearing," said Christopher E. Clouser, chairman of the International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum.
The newly developed, one-of-a-kind rings are being presented to Hall of Famers at tennis events around the world over the next several years to mark their achievement of Hall of Fame induction. The International Tennis Hall of Fame rings have been generously underwritten by The Bruce T. Halle Family of Scottsdale, Arizona. Bruce, founder of Discount Tire, and his wife Diane, a philanthropist, are tennis enthusiasts and they have generously supported communities in the areas where Discount Tire is located, and beyond, for many years.
Clouser presented Maria Bueno's ring in front of a crowd of enthusiastic fans at the US Open. In celebration of the event, Bueno delighted fans with photos, autographs and an up-close look at her new ring. The presentation was filmed for TV Globo, the largest network in Bueno's native Brazil, where she is one of the nation's most celebrated athletes. A naturally talented tennis player since childhood, Bueno had not had any formal training when she won her first tournament at age 12. At age 14, she won the country's women's singles championship. She won her first Grand Slam at Wimbledon in 1958, capturing the doubles title with Althea Gibson. The following year, she won the Wimbledon singles title and the U.S. Championships, and earned the world No. 1 ranking. She was named the Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year in 1959 as well. Bueno went on to capture a total of 19 Grand Slam titles in singles, doubles and mixed doubles and in 1960, she achieved the rare feat of a calendar-year Grand Slam, winning the doubles title at all four Grand Slams. Bueno was inducted to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1978. Currently, she is the only Brazilian tennis player to have achieved this accomplishment.
Vic Seixas was presented his ring at the International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum Annual Meeting on Friday, September 9, where he was honored before a crowd of Hall of Fame Board Members and fellow Hall of Famers.The ring was presented by fellow Hall of Famer Tony Trabert, who served as president of the International Tennis Hall of Fame for ten years, until stepping down at the same meeting. Seixas enjoyed a lengthy tennis career spanning 30 years, during which time he captured scores of singles, doubles and mixed doubles titles. Between 1949 and 1969, he competed at the U.S. Nationals an astonishing 28 times, winning the singles title in 1954, the doubles in 1952 and 1954 and the mixed doubles in 1953, 1954 and 1955. He won a total of 12 Grand Slam tournament titles, with victories in singles, doubles and mixed doubles. Seixas was a member of the United States Davis Cup team from 1951-1957 and he played an integral role in the team's victory in 1954. A former world No. 1 player, Seixas was inducted to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1971.
Dick Savitt was presented his ring privately at The Legends Ball, an annual benefit gala for the International Tennis Hall of Fame that was hosted on Friday, September 9 in New York City. The ring was presented by Peggy Woolard, a member of the Executive Committee and Board of Directors of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, and her husband, Ed. Savitt was a self-taught tennis player who developed his natural talents into an elite career. Sixty years ago this year, in 1961, he won both the Wimbledon and U.S. Nationals titles, and he remains one of just three Americans to have won both of those titles in the same year (also Don Budge and Jimmy Connors). Also in 1951, Savitt played for the U.S. Davis Cup team, winning 9 of his 10 matches. With his 1951 Grand Slam tournament titles, Savitt became the first Jewish player to win either of those majors, and he also became the first Jewish player on the cover of Time magazine, an important accomplishment as it raised awareness for the sport among that community. In 1981, nearly 30 years after Savitt retired from professional tennis, he and his son Robert won the USTA National Father-Son Indoor Championship. Savitt was inducted to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1976.
Ring ceremonies have occurred recently in Houston, Barcelona, Los Angeles, and during the annual Hall of Fame Induction Weekend in Newport, R.I. The personalized rings bear a green stone set in gold, to complement the Hall of Fame's brand colors. In addition, the rings are etched with each honoree's name and the Hall of Fame logo crest.
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. The International Tennis Hall of Fame has inducted 220 individuals from 19 different countries since 1955. 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 Induction Ceremony in July, and numerous public events year-round. To learn more, visit tennisfame.com.
About the International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum
Established in 1954, the International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum is a non-profit institution dedicated to preserving the history of tennis, inspiring and encouraging junior tennis development, providing a landmark for tennis enthusiasts worldwide, and enshrining tennis heroes and heroines with the highest honor in the sport of tennis- induction into the International Tennis Hall of Fame. In 1986, the International Tennis Federation, the governing body of tennis, officially recognized the International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum as the sport's official Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame is located in Newport, Rhode Island, USA, on a six-acre property that features an extensive Museum chronicling the history of the sport and honoring the 220 Hall of Famers; 13 grass tennis courts and an indoor tennis facility that are open to the public and to a club membership; a rare Court Tennis facility; and an historic 297-seat theatre. Annually in July, the venue hosts the Campbell's Hall of Fame Tennis Championships for the Van Alen Cup, an ATP World Tour event. The buildings and grounds, which were constructed in 1880 by McKim, Mead & White to serve as a social club for Newport's summer residents, are renowned for their incredible architecture and preservation. The facility was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1987. The International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum is supported by Official Partners including BNP Paribas, Campbell Soup Company, Chubb Personal Insurance, Kia Motors and Rolex Watch USA. For information on the International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum and its programs, call 401-849-3990 or visit us online at www.tennisfame.com.