Class of 1984
World No. 3 (1939)
Grand Slam Results
17-time major champion, and six-time finalist
Member of the Australian Davis Cup Team 1933-1939, 1946, 1948
Member of the Australian Championship Davis Cup Team 1939
Overall Record: 43-13
Singles Record: 24-10
Doubles Record: 19-3
When evaluating the tennis career of Adrian Quist, two defining accomplishments stand out: The star from Down Under won two Wimbledon Gentlemen Doubles Championships 15 years apart (1935, 1950) and captured a record 13 Australian National Championships from 1936 to 1950. Ten of those titles came in doubles competition, the last eight coming with longtime partner John Bromwich, who appropriately entered the International Tennis Hall of Fame with him in 1984.
Few players in tennis history have dominated a singular major tournament – and one on native soil no less – than Quist at the Australian. He won both the singles and doubles championships in 1936, 1940, and 1948. The first two singles titles came over compatriot Jack Crawford, a lengthy and tiresome victory in 1936 (6-2, 6-3, 4-6, 3-6, 9-7), and a shorter and less arduous triumph in 1940 (6-3, 6-1, 6-2). In what must have been a bittersweet, yet still satisfying victory in 1948, Quist defeated Bromwich in five sets, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, 2-6, 6-3. On a sweltering afternoon, Quist escaped from a 3-3 tie against his partner in the fifth and hung on for a big win.
Doubles was Quist’s forte, however, and the 5-foot-6 all-court player with fluid groundstrokes and punchy volleys was a mainstay playing the ad side of the court. In addition to winning 10 doubles titles on his home turf, he captured two Wimbledon titles (1935, 1950), one French (1935) and one U.S. National Championship (1939). Collectively, Quist won 17 major titles. He was a doubles finalist six other times. His years alongside Bromwich were record breaking. The pair won a record eight consecutive Australian Open titles (1938, 1939, 1940, 1946, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1950) sandwiched around World War II (1941-1945,) and reeled off a 38-match winning streak. In 1951, the youthful duo of Frank Sedgman, 23, and Ken McGregor, 22, needed five sets and their full arsenal of skills to end Quist, 33, and Bromwich’s, 38, magical run, 11-9, 2-6, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3. Quist’s first two Aussie championships came alongside Don Turnbull in 1936 and 1937, the latter victory coming against Bromwich and Jack Harper in five grueling sets, 6-2, 9-7, 1-6, 6-8, 6-4. After that match Quist and Bromwich aligned and in 1938 began their doubles dominance, defeating the formidable German tandem of Gottfried von Cramm and Henner Henkel, 7-5, 6-4, 6-0, one of the five straight set victories they earned at the Australian.
A career Grand Slam doubles winner, Quist won the French Championships with Crawford in 1935, defeating fellow countrymen Turnbull and Vivian McGrath, 6-1, 6-4, 6-2. He won the 1939 U.S. National Men’s Doubles Championship with Bromwich over Harry Hopman and Crawford, 8-6, 6-1, 6-4 and closed out his magnificent doubles career with Bromwich at Wimbledon in 1950, a 7-5, 3-6, 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 triumph over compatriots Geoff Brown and Bill Sidwell.
Quist was ranked in the world Top 10 four times between 1936 and 1948, ascending to No. 3 in 1939. He was a member of the Australian Davis Cup team between 1933 and 1948, interestingly playing more singles (24) than doubles (19) matches. He played his finest Davis Cup matches in the 1936 North American Zone against the United States, defeating Wilmer Allison in singles (6-3, 5-7, 6-4, 6-1) and alongside Bromwich ousting Don Budge and Gene Mako (4-6, 2-6, 6-4, 7-5, 6-4).
The legendary Jack Kramer, who weighed in on nearly every tennis player in his autobiography, wrote that in doubles “Quist played the backhand court. He had a dink backhand that was better for doubles than singles, and a classic forehand drive with natural spin. He was also fine at the net, volley and forehand.”
Quist retired in 1950, becoming General Manager of the Dunlop Sporting Goods Company in Australia.
Australian Championships: W 1936, 1940, 1948
Wimbledon: QF 1936
U.S. Nationals: QF 1933
Australian Championships: W 1936 , 1937 , 1938, 1939, 1940, 1946, 1947, 1948 , 1949, 1950
French Championships: W 1935
Wimbledon: W 1935, 1950
U.S. Nationals: W 1939
Australian Championships: SF 1935
French Championships: SF 1934
Wimbledon: SF 1935
U.S. Nationals: SF 1938