Pat Cash

17 May 2011

Patrick Hart “Pat” Cash (born 27 May 1965) is a retired Australian professional tennis player who won the men’s singles title at Wimbledon in 1987.

Early career

Cash first came to the tennis world’s attention as a junior player in the early 1980s. He was ranked the top junior player in the world in 1981, and in 1982 he won the junior titles at bothWimbledon and the US Open. He turned professional in 1982 and won his first top-level singles title that year in Melbourne.

Cash established a reputation on the tour as a hard-fighting serve-and-volleyer and for wearing his trademark black-and-white checked headband and his cross earring.

In 1983, Cash became the youngest player to play in a Davis Cup final. He won the decisive singles rubber against Joakim Nyström as Australia defeated Sweden 3–2 to claim the cup.

In 1984, Cash reached the men’s singles semi-finals at both Wimbledon and the US Open. He lost in three sets in the Wimbledon semi-finals to John Wang and was defeated in the semi-finals at the US Open by Ivan Lendl, who won their match in a fifth set tiebreaker. This day regarded as the greatest day in US open history featured the 3 set thriller women’s final Evert v Navratilova and a McEnroe v Connors 5 set marathon creating the day now known as ‘Super Saturday’

Cash was the runner-up in the men’s doubles competition at Wimbledon in both 1984 with McNamee and 1985 with Fitzgerald.

In 1986, he helped Australia regain the Davis Cup with a 3–2 victory over Sweden. Cash again won the decisive singles rubber, recovering from two sets down against Mikael Pernfors.

In 1987, Cash reached his first Grand Slam singles final at the Australian Open, where he lost in five sets to Stefan Edberg. This was the last Australian Open played at Kooyong on a grass court.

Wimbledon victory

The crowning moment of Cash’s career came at Wimbledon in 1987. Having already beatenMats Wilander in the quarter-finals and Jimmy Connors in the semi-finals, Cash defeated the World Number 1, Ivan Lendl, in the final. Cash sealed the victory by climbing into the stands and up to the player’s box at Centre Court, where he celebrated with his family, girlfriend, and coach, Ian Barclay. This started a Wimbledon tradition that has been followed by many other champions at Wimbledon and other Grand Slam tournaments since. He only lost one set during the entire tournament.

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