Margaret Molesworth

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Margaret Molesworth
Full name Maud Margaret Molesworth
Country  Australia
Born (1894-10-18)18 October 1894
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Died 9 July 1985(1985-07-09) (aged 90)
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Singles
Highest ranking No. 10 (1922)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open W (1922, 1923)
French Open 3R (1934)
Wimbledon 1R (1934)
Doubles
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open W (1930, 1933, 1934)
Wimbledon 3R (1934)
Grand Slam Mixed Doubles results
Australian Open F (1923)

Maud Margaret 'Mall' Molesworth (18 October 1894 – 9 July 1985) (née Mutch) was a tennis player from Queensland, Australia who won the inaugural Australasian Championships women's singles title in 1922 and 1923.

Tennis career[edit]

She won her first major tennis title in 1914 – the Queensland ladies doubles. For much of the next five years, sporting contests in Australia were cancelled due to World War I.

Molesworth won tennis championships in New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, and Tasmania beginning in 1919. At the first Australian Championships in 1922, Molesworth defeated fellow Australian Esna Boyd Robertson 6–3, 10–8 in the final. A year later, she successfully defended her title, again defeating Robertson in the final.

Molesworth was unable to compete overseas until 1934 when, at age 40, she reach the last sixteen of the French Championships. At the 1934 Wimbledon Championships she lost in the first round of the singles event to Rollin Couquerque and reached the third round of the doubles with Joan Hartigan.[1]

In doubles, Molesworth won three women's titles at the Australian Championships with Emily Hood Westacott, in 1930, 1933, and 1934. She was also runner-up in women's and mixed doubles at the Australian Championships in 1923.

Molesworth was the first Australian woman tennis player to be listed in the world's top ten rankings. A. Wallis Myers of the Daily Telegraph rated her No. 10 in 1922 and 1923.[2]

In 1924, mainly for health reasons, Molesworth retired from the sport. She came back a few years later, always considered a threat in Australian tournaments. In 1934, she reached the Australian singles final once more. Later that year, she competed overseas for the first time, playing at Wimbledon and the French Championships.

Retirement[edit]

After her retirement from competitive play, Molesworth became one of the first female professional coaches in Australia. Until her death in 1985, she maintained a lifelong interest in the sport of tennis.[1]

On 19 June 1918, in Brisbane, she married Bevil Hugh Molesworth, an educator and radio broadcaster.[3]

Grand Slam finals[edit]

Singles: 3 (2 titles, 1 runner-up)[edit]

Result Year Championship Opponent in final Score in final
Winner 1922 Australian Championships Australia Esna Boyd Robertson 6–3, 10–8
Winner 1923 Australian Championships Australia Esna Boyd Robertson 6–1, 7–5
Runner-up 1934 Australian Championships Australia Joan Hartigan 6–1, 6–4

Doubles: 4 (4 titles, 0 runner-up)[edit]

Result Year Tournament Partner Opponents in final Score in final
Runner-up 1923 Australian Championships Australia Beryl Turner Australia Esna Boyd Robertson
Australia Sylvia Lance Harper
1–6, 4–6
Winner 1930 Australian Championships Australia Emily Hood Westacott Australia Marjorie Cox Crawford
Australia Sylvia Lance Harper
6–3, 0–6, 7–5
Winner 1933 Australian Championships Australia Emily Hood Westacott Australia Joan Hartigan
United States Marjorie Gladman
6–3, 6–2
Winner 1934 Australian Championships Australia Emily Hood Westacott Australia Joan Hartigan
Australia Ula Valkenburg
6–8, 6–4, 6–4

Mixed doubles: 1 (0 titles, 1 runner-up)[edit]

Result Year Tournament Partner Opponents in final Score in final
Runner-up 1923 Australian Championships Australia Bert St. John Australia Sylvia Lance Harper
Australia Horace Rice
6–2, 4–6, 4–6

Grand Slam singles tournament timeline[edit]

Tournament 1922 1923 1924 1925 1926 1927 1928 1929 1930 1931 1932 1933 1934 1935 Career SR
Australian Championships W W QF A A A QF QF QF 1R A QF F 2R 2 / 10
French Championships1 A A NH A A A A A A A A A 3R A 0 / 1
Wimbledon A A A A A A A A A A A A 1R A 0 / 1
US Championships A A A A A A A A A A A A A A 0 / 0
SR 1 / 1 1 / 1 0 / 1 0 / 0 0 / 0 0 / 0 0 / 1 0 / 1 0 / 1 0 / 1 0 / 0 0 / 1 0 / 3 0 / 1 2 / 12

NH = tournament not held.

A = did not participate in the tournament.

SR = the ratio of the number of Grand Slam singles tournaments won to the number of those tournaments played.

1Through 1923, the French Championships were open only to French nationals. The World Hard Court Championships (WHCC), actually played on clay in Paris or Brussels, began in 1912 and were open to all nationalities. The results from the 1922 and 1923 editions of that tournament are shown here. The Olympics replaced the WHCC in 1924, as the Olympics were held in Paris. Beginning in 1925, the French Championships were open to all nationalities, with the results shown here beginning with that year.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Wimbledon players archive – Maud Molesworth". AELTC. 
  2. ^ Collins, Bud (2008). The Bud Collins History of Tennis: An Authoritative Encyclopedia and Record Book. New York, N.Y: New Chapter Press. pp. 695, 701. ISBN 0-942257-41-3. 
  3. ^ Molesworth, Bevil Hugh (1891–1971)