Adriano Panatta

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Adriano Panatta
Country  Italy
Residence Florence, Italy
Born (1950-07-09) 9 July 1950 (age 64)
Rome, Italy
Height 1.83 m (6ft)
Turned pro 1969 (amateur tour from 1968)
Retired 1983
Plays Right-handed (one-handed backhand)
Prize money $776,187
Singles
Career record 369–225
Career titles 10
Highest ranking No. 4 (24 August 1976)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open 1R (1969)
French Open W (1976)
Wimbledon QF (1979)
US Open 4R (1978)
Other tournaments
Tour Finals RR (1975)
WCT Finals QF (1977)
Doubles
Career record 233–152
Career titles 17
Highest ranking No. 15 (24 March 1980)
Team competitions
Davis Cup W (1976)

Adriano Panatta (born 9 July 1950) is a former professional tennis player from Italy. He is best remembered for winning the French Open in 1976, and for being the only player to ever defeat Björn Borg at Roland Garros, which he did on two occasions.

Career[edit]

Panatta was born in Rome. His father was the caretaker of the Tennis Club Parioli, and as a youngster he learned to play the game on the club's clay courts. He became a successful European junior player before turning professional.

In his early career, Panatta won top-level professional titles at Bournemouth in 1973, Florence in 1974, and at Kitzbühel and Stockholm in 1975.

The pinnacle of his career arrived in 1976, when he won the French Open defeating Harold Solomon in the final 6–1, 6–4, 4–6, 7–6 (in the first round he had saved a match point against Czechoslovakian player Pavel Hutka). In the same year he also won the Italian Open (having saved 11 match points in his first round match against the Australian Kim Warwick) beating Guillermo Vilas in the final (2–6, 7–6, 6–2, 7–6). He finished off 1976 by helping Italy capture its first-ever Davis Cup title, winning two singles and a doubles rubber in the final against Chile. He reached his career-high singles ranking of World No. 4 that year.

Panatta is the only player to have defeated Björn Borg at the French Open. He achieved this feat twice – in the fourth round in 1973 (7–6, 2–6, 7–5, 7–6), and in quarter-finals in 1976 (6–3, 6–3, 2–6, 7–6). He also faced Borg at the semi-final stage of the 1975 tournament; Borg won on this occasion in four sets.

In 1977, Panatta won the WCT tournament in Houston, where he managed to defeat Jimmy Connors and Vitas Gerulaitis. He followed this up with another title in Tokyo in 1978.

Panatta was less successful on fast surfaces. On grass courts, his most notable performance came in reaching the quarter-finals at Wimbledon in 1979. He was beaten at that stage by Pat Dupre in 5 sets (3–6, 6–4, 6–7, 6–4, 6–3).

After the 1976 Davis Cup triumph, Panatta helped Italy reach the Davis Cup final on three further occasions – in 1977, 1979 and 1980. The team lost to Australia in 1977, the United States in 1979, and to Czechoslovakia in 1980. Overall, Panatta compiled a 64–36 Davis Cup record (55–17 on clay).

Panatta's final career singles title came in 1980 at Florence. He retired from the professional tour in 1983.

Since retiring as a player, Panatta has gone on to serve as Captain of Italy's Davis Cup team and as Tournament Director of the Rome Masters. He is also a professional powerboat racer.

Grand Slam finals[edit]

Singles: 1 (1–0)[edit]

Win (1)
Year Championship Opponent in final Score in final
1976 French Open United States Harold Solomon 6–1, 6–4, 4–6, 7–6

Career finals[edit]

Singles: 26 (10–16)[edit]

Outcome No. Date Championship Surface Opponent in the final Score in the final
Winner 1. 1971 Senigallia, Italy Clay United Kingdom Martin Mulligan 6–3, 7-5, 6-1
Runner-up 1. 1972 Hamburg, Germany Clay Spain Manuel Orantes 3–6, 8–9, 0–6
Runner-up 2. 1972 Gstaad, Switzerland Clay Spain Andrés Gimeno 5–7, 8–9, 4–6
Runner-up 3. 1973 Valencia, Spain Clay Spain Manuel Orantes 4–6, 4–6, 3–6
Runner-up 4. 1973 Barcelona, Spain Clay Romania Ilie Năstase 1–6, 6–3, 1–6, 2–6
Runner-up 5. 1973 Nice, France Clay Spain Manuel Orantes 6–7, 7–5, 6–4, 6–7, 10–12
Runner-up 6. 1973 Madrid, Spain Clay Romania Ilie Năstase 3–6, 6–7, 7–5, 1–6
Runner-up 7. 1973 Florence, Italy Clay Romania Ilie Năstase 3–6, 6–3, 6–0, 6–7, 4–6
Winner 2. 1973 Bournemouth, England Clay Romania Ilie Năstase 6–8, 7–5, 6–3
Winner 3. 1974 Florence, Italy Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci 6–3, 6–1
Runner-up 8. 1974 Båstad, Sweden Clay Sweden Björn Borg 3–6, 0–6, 7–6, 3–6
Winner 4. 1975 Kitzbühel, Austria Clay Czechoslovakia Jan Kodeš 2–6, 6–2, 7–5, 6–4
Runner-up 9. 1975 Madrid, Spain Clay Czechoslovakia Jan Kodeš 2–6, 6–3, 6–7, 2–6
Runner-up 10. 1975 Barcelona, Spain Clay Sweden Björn Borg 6–1, 6–7, 3–6, 2–6
Winner 5. 1975 Stockholm, Sweden Hard (i) United States Jimmy Connors 6–4, 6–3
Runner-up 11. 1975 Buenos Aires, Argentina Clay Argentina Guillermo Vilas 6–2, 2–6, 6–4
Winner 6. 1976 Rome, Italy Clay Argentina Guillermo Vilas 2–6, 7–6, 6–2, 7–6
Winner 7. 1976 French Open, Paris Clay United States Harold Solomon 6–1, 6–4, 4–6, 7–6
Runner-up 12. 1976 Gstaad, Switzerland Clay Mexico Raúl Ramírez 5–7, 7–6, 1–6, 3–6
Winner 8. 1977 Houston WCT, U.S. Clay United States Vitas Gerulaitis 7–6, 6–7, 6–1
Runner-up 13. 1978 Rome, Italy Clay Sweden Björn Borg 6–1, 3–6, 1–6, 6–4, 3–6
Winner 9. 1978 Tokyo Outdoor, Japan Clay United States Pat Du Pré 6–3, 6–3
Runner-up 14. 1978 Bologna, Italy Clay United States Peter Fleming 2–6, 6–7
Winner 10. 1980 Florence, Italy Clay Mexico Raúl Ramírez 6–2, 2–6, 6–4
Runner-up 15. 1980 Geneva, Switzerland Clay Hungary Balázs Taróczy 3–6, 2–6
Runner-up 16. 1980 Paris Indoor, France Carpet United States Brian Gottfried 6–4, 3–6, 1–6, 6–7

Doubles: 28 (17–11)[edit]

Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponents in the final Score in the final
Winner 1. 1973 Florence, Italy Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci Spain Juan Gisbert
Romania Ilie Năstase
6–3, 6–4
Winner 2. 1974 Florence, Italy Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci Hungary Róbert Machán
Hungary Balázs Taróczy
6–3, 3–6, 6–4
Winner 3. 1974 Båstad, Sweden Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci Sweden Ove Nils Bengtson
Sweden Björn Borg
3–6, 6–2, 6–4
Runner-up 1. 1975 Richmond WCT, U.S. Carpet Italy Paolo Bertolucci Austria Hans Kary
United States Fred McNair
6–7, 7–5, 6–7
Winner 4. 1975 Bologna WCT, Italy Carpet Italy Paolo Bertolucci United States Arthur Ashe
Netherlands Tom Okker
6–3, 3–6, 6–3
Runner-up 2. 1975 Barcelona WCT, Spain Carpet Italy Paolo Bertolucci United States Arthur Ashe
Netherlands Tom Okker
5–7, 1–6
Winner 5. 1975 London WCT, England Carpet Italy Paolo Bertolucci West Germany Jürgen Fassbender
West Germany Hans-Jürgen Pohmann
6–3, 6–4
Winner 6. 1975 Kitzbühel, Austria Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci France Patrice Dominguez
France François Jauffret
6–2, 6–2, 7–6
Winner 7. 1975 Buenos Aires, Argentina Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci West Germany Jürgen Fassbender
West Germany Hans-Jürgen Pohmann
7–6, 6–7, 6–4
Runner-up 3. 1976 Stockholm WCT, Sweden Carpet Netherlands Tom Okker Soviet Union Alex Metreveli
Romania Ilie Năstase
4–6, 5–7
Runner-up 4. 1976 Gstaad, Switzerland Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci West Germany Jürgen Fassbender
West Germany Hans-Jürgen Pohmann
5–7, 3–6, 3–6
Runner-up 5. 1977 Mexico City WCT, Mexico Hard Romania Ilie Năstase Poland Wojtek Fibak
Netherlands Tom Okker
2–6, 3–6
Winner 8. 1977 St. Louis WCT, U.S. Carpet Romania Ilie Năstase India Vijay Amritraj
United States Dick Stockton
6–4, 3–6, 7–6
Winner 9. 1977 London WCT, England Hard (i) Romania Ilie Năstase United Kingdom Mark Cox
United States Eddie Dibbs
7–6, 6–7, 6–3
Winner 10. 1977 Houston WCT, U.S. Hard Romania Ilie Năstase Australia John Alexander
Australia Phil Dent
6–3, 6–4
Runner-up 6. 1977 Charlotte WCT, U.S. Carpet Italy Corrado Barazzutti Netherlands Tom Okker
Australia Ken Rosewall
1–6, 6–3, 6–7
Runner-up 7. 1977 Masters Doubles WCT, New York Carpet United States Vitas Gerulaitis India Vijay Amritraj
United States Dick Stockton
6–7, 6–7, 6–4, 3–6
Winner 11. 1978 Florence, Italy Clay Italy Corrado Barazzutti Australia Mark Edmondson
Australia John Marks
6–3, 6–7, 6–3
Runner-up 8. 1979 Las Vegas, U.S. Hard Mexico Raúl Ramírez United States Marty Riessen
United States Sherwood Stewart
6–4, 4–6, 6–7
Winner 12. 1979 Florence, Italy Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci Czechoslovakia Ivan Lendl
Czechoslovakia Pavel Složil
6–4, 6–3
Winner 13. 1979 Barcelona, Spain Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci Brazil Carlos Kirmayr
Brazil Cassio Motta
6–4, 6–3
Winner 14. 1980 Monte Carlo, Monaco Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci United States Vitas Gerulaitis
United States John McEnroe
6–2, 5–7, 6–3
Runner-up 9. 1980 Florence, Italy Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci United States Gene Mayer
Mexico Raúl Ramírez
1–6, 4–6
Winner 15. 1980 Paris Indoor, France Carpet Italy Paolo Bertolucci United States Brian Gottfried
South Africa Raymond Moore
6–4, 6–4
Winner 16. 1981 Nancy, France Hard (i) Romania Ilie Năstase United Kingdom John Feaver
Czechoslovakia Jiří Hřebec
6–4, 2–6, 6–4
Runner-up 10. 1981 Florence, Italy Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci Mexico Raúl Ramírez
Czechoslovakia Pavel Složil
3–6, 6–3, 3–6
Winner 17. 1982 Florence, Italy Clay Italy Paolo Bertolucci United States Sammy Giammalva Jr.
United States Tony Giammalva
7–6, 6–1
Runner-up 11. 1984 Palermo, Italy Clay Sweden Henrik Sundström Czechoslovakia Tomáš Šmíd
United States Blaine Willenborg
7–6, 3–6, 0–6

Singles Performance timeline[edit]

Tournament 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 SR W–L
Grand Slams
Australian Open 1R A A A A A A A A A A A A A 0 / 1 0–1
French Open 1R 4R 3R QF SF 2R SF W QF 2R 3R 1R 2R 2R 1 / 14 34–13
Wimbledon A 1R 3R 3R A 3R 3R 3R 2R A QF 3R A A 0 / 9 17–9
US Open A A A 1R 3R A A 2R 3R 4R 1R A 3R A 0 / 7 10–7
Win–Loss 0–2 3–2 4–2 5–3 7–2 2–2 7–2 10–2 7–3 4–2 6–3 2–2 3–2 1–1 1 / 31 61–30
Year End Ranking 14 34 14 7 23 23 29 34 39 76

External links[edit]