Derek Hardwick

January 30, 1921
May 28, 1987
Place of Birth:
London, England
Induction Category:
Year of Induction:

Derek Hardwick was instrumental in one of the most important developments in tennis history with the creation of Open tennis in 1968. Two Englishmen - Herman David, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1998, and Hardwick, along with the American Robert J. Kelleher, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2000, joined in achieving this goal over the opposition of the president of the International Lawn Tennis Federation (ILTF) and of the entrenched tennis establishment of Europe and America. 

A former British doubles champion, Hardwick rose to the position of chairman of the British Lawn Tennis Association in 1968. As chairman, he took the bold step forward by voting affirmatively to make Wimbledon, and all other British tournaments, "Open" in 1968, against the will of the ILTF. Hardwick and Kelleher banded together in their respective nations to ultimately force the ILTF to change its policies on "amateur" and "professional" tennis so that all nations would benefit. In an emergency meeting held in Paris in 1968, the ILTF finally agreed. Hardwick also served the game as chairman of the Men's International Professional Tennis Council (1974 - 1977), the governing body of men's tennis prior to the advent of the ATP Tour. He was also the president of the International Tennis Federation (1975 - 1977).