Tony Roche

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For the comedy writer, see Tony Roche (writer).
Anthony Dalton Roche
TONY ROCHE.jpg
Country  Australia
Residence Turramurra, NSW, Australia
Born (1945-05-17) 17 May 1945 (age 69)
Wagga Wagga, Australia
Height 1.77 m (5 ft 10 in)
Turned pro 1968 (amateur tour from 1963)
Retired 1979
Plays Left-handed (one-handed backhand)
Prize money $529,199
Int. Tennis HOF 1986 (member page)
Singles
Career record 235–114 (Open era)
Career titles 26 (7 ATP)
Highest ranking No. 2 (1969, Lance Tingay)[1]
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open SF (1965, 1967, 1969, 1975)
French Open W (1966)
Wimbledon F (1968)
US Open F (1969, 1970)
Doubles
Career record 208–94 (Open era)
Career titles 18 (Open era)
Highest ranking No. 1 (1965)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open W (1965, 1967, 1971, 1976, 1977)
French Open W (1967, 1969)
Wimbledon W (1965, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1974)
US Open W (1967)
Grand Slam Mixed Doubles results
Australian Open W (1966)
Wimbledon W (1976)
Team competitions
Davis Cup W (1965, 1966, 1967, 1977 )

Anthony "Tony" Dalton Roche, AO MBE (born 17 May 1945) is a former professional Australian tennis player, native of Tarcutta. He played junior tennis in the New South Wales regional city of Wagga Wagga.[2] He won one Grand Slam singles title and thirteen Grand Slam doubles titles, and was ranked as high as World No. 2 by Lance Tingay of The Daily Telegraph in 1969.[1] He also coached multi-Grand Slam winning World No. 1s, Ivan Lendl, Patrick Rafter, Roger Federer, Lleyton Hewitt and former World No. 4, Jelena Dokić.

Playing career[edit]

Tony Roche at the Amsterdam tournament in 1969

Roche started to play tennis at school when he was nine. His father, a butcher, and mother were recreational tennis players and encouraged his interest.[3] Roche grew up playing in Australia under the tutelage of Harry Hopman, who also coached other Australian tennis players such as Rod Laver and Ken Rosewall.

Tony Roche at Wimbledon circa 1983 in Mixed Doubles

A left-hander, Roche had a successful singles and double career. He won one singles Grand Slam tournament, the 1966 French Open at Roland Garros, defeating István Gulyás in the final. He was five times the runner-up at Grand Slam tournaments: the French Championships in 1965 and 1967, losing to Fred Stolle and Roy Emerson respectively, Wimbledon in 1968, losing to Rod Laver, and the US Open in 1969 and 1970, losing to Rod Laver and Ken Rosewall. With compatriot John Newcombe, he won 12 Grand Slam men's doubles tournaments.

In January 1968, Roche turned professional, signing with World Championship Tennis, joining other pros like Cliff Drysdale, Nikola Pilić, and Roger Taylor to form the "Handsome Eight".[4][5][6]

Perhaps one of his greatest achievements came in 1977, being called up to play singles in the finals of the Davis Cup tournament versus Italy, nearly 10 years since he had last played for Australia. In the tie, Roche upset top Italian Adriano Panatta, 6–3, 6–4, 6–4, to lead Australia to a 3–1 victory, winning the Davis Cup. Shoulder and elbow injuries cut short his career after having finished in the top 10 for six consecutive years.

Coaching career[edit]

After completing his playing career Roche has developed a highly successful career as a tennis coach. He was the coach of the Denver Racquets who won the first World Team Tennis in competition 1974.[7] Ivan Lendl hired Roche as a full-time coach for Roche's advice on volleying. (Lendl dreamed of winning Wimbledon, and because Roche had been a fine grass court player, he sought his tutelage.) Roche also coached former world no. 1 Patrick Rafter from 1997 to the end of his career in 2002. Roche coached world no. 1 Roger Federer from 2005 to 12 May 2007. It is reputed this was on a "handshake agreement" with no contract; Roche was paid by the week. Federer hired Roche for the opposite reason that Lendl hired him: to work on his clay-court game (as Roche had won the French Open). He also coached two-time Grand Slam singles titlist Lleyton Hewitt, who was aiming to get his career back on track after a number of unsuccessful years on the ATP Tour.[8] On the day of her first round match against Alisa Kleybanova at the 2010 Australian Open, which she eventually lost in straight sets, former world no. 4, Jelena Dokić, requested an hour-long session from Roche as last minute training.

Tony Roche also coaches many junior players at Sydney Olympic Park, in preparation for their ATP junior qualification pro tours, starting in November.

Honours[edit]

Roche was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in 1981 and an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in 2001.[9][10] He entered the International Tennis Hall of Fame alongside doubles partner and close friend John Newcombe in 1986.[11] In 1990 he was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame.[12] He received an Australian Sports Medal in 2000 and a Centenary Medal in 2001.[13][14]

Major finals[edit]

Grand Slam finals[edit]

Singles: 6 (1 title, 5 runner-ups)[edit]

Outcome Year Championship Surface Opponent in the final Score in the final
Runner-up 1965 French Championships Clay Australia Fred Stolle 6–3, 0–6, 2–6, 3–6
Winner 1966 French Championships Clay Hungary István Gulyás 6–1, 6–4, 7–5
Runner-up 1967 French Championships Clay Australia Roy Emerson 1–6, 4–6, 6–2, 2–6
↓ Open Era ↓
Runner-up 1968 Wimbledon Grass Australia Rod Laver 3–6, 4–6, 2–6
Runner-up 1969 US Open Grass Australia Rod Laver 9–7, 1–6, 2–6, 2–6
Runner-up 1970 US Open Grass Australia Ken Rosewall 6–2, 4–6, 6–7, 3–6

Doubles: 15 (13 titles, 2 runner-ups)[edit]

Outcome Year Championship Surface Partner Opponent in the final Score in the final
Runner-up 1964 French Championships Clay Australia John Newcombe Australia Roy Emerson
Australia Ken Fletcher
5–7, 3–6, 6–3, 5–7
Winner 1965 Australian Championships Grass Australia John Newcombe Australia Roy Emerson
Australia Fred Stolle
3–6, 4–6, 13–11, 6–3, 6–4
Winner 1965 Wimbledon Championships Grass Australia John Newcombe Australia Ken Fletcher
South Africa Bob Hewitt
7–5, 6–3, 6–4
Runner-up 1966 Australian Championships (2) Grass Australia John Newcombe Australia Roy Emerson
Australia Fred Stolle
9–7, 3–6, 8–6, 12–14, 10–12
Winner 1967 Australian Championships (2) Grass Australia John Newcombe Australia Bill Bowrey
Australia Owen Davidson
3–6, 6–3, 7–5, 6–8, 8–6
Winner 1967 French Championships Clay Australia John Newcombe Australia Roy Emerson
Australia Ken Fletcher
6–3, 9–7, 12–10
Winner 1967 US Championships Grass Australia John Newcombe Australia Bill Bowrey
Australia Owen Davidson
6–8, 9–7, 6–3, 6–3
↓ Open Era ↓
Winner 1968 Wimbledon (2) Grass Australia John Newcombe Australia Ken Fletcher
Australia Ken Rosewall
3–6, 8–6, 5–7, 14–12, 6–3
Winner 1969 French Open (2) Clay Australia John Newcombe Australia Roy Emerson
Australia Rod Laver
4–6, 6–1, 3–6, 6–4, 6–4
Winner 1969 Wimbledon (3) Grass Australia John Newcombe Netherlands Tom Okker
United States Marty Riessen
7–5, 11–9, 6–3
Winner 1970 Wimbledon (4) Grass Australia John Newcombe Australia Ken Rosewall
Australia Fred Stolle
10–8, 6–3, 6–1
Winner 1971 Australian Open (3) Grass Australia John Newcombe Netherlands Tom Okker
United States Marty Riessen
6–2, 7–6
Winner 1974 Wimbledon (5) Grass Australia John Newcombe United States Robert Lutz
United States Stan Smith
8–6, 6–4, 6–4
Winner 1976 Australian Open (4) Grass Australia John Newcombe Australia Ross Case
Australia Geoff Masters
7–6, 6–4
Winner 1977 Australian Open (January) (5) Grass United States Arthur Ashe United States Charlie Pasarell
United States Erik Van Dillen
6–4, 6–4

Mixed doubles: 5 (2 titles, 3 runner-ups)[edit]

Outcome Year Championship Surface Partner Opponent in the final Score in the final
Runner-up 1965 Wimbledon Championships Grass Australia Judy Tegart Australia Margaret Smith
Australia Ken Fletcher
10–12, 3–6
Winner 1966 Australian Championships Grass Australia Judy Tegart Australia Robyn Ebbern
Australia William Bowrey
6–1, 6–3
Runner-up 1967 Australian Championships Grass Australia Judy Tegart Australia Lesley Turner
Australia Owen Davidson
7–9, 4–6
↓ Open Era ↓
Runner-up 1969 Wimbledon (2) Grass Australia Judy Tegart United Kingdom Ann Haydon
Australia Fred Stolle
2–6, 3–6
Winner 1976 Wimbledon Grass France Françoise Dürr United States Rosemary Casals
United States Dick Stockton
6–3, 2–6, 7–5

Grand Slam Singles performance timeline[edit]

Tournament 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 Career SR
Australian Open A QF SF QF SF A SF QF 3R A A 2R SF QF 3R 1R QF 3R 0 / 14
French Open 1R 2R F W F A SF A A A A A A A A A A 1 / 6
Wimbledon 1R 2R 2R QF 2R F SF QF 1R A A 3R SF 4R A 1R A 0 / 13
US Open 3R QF A 3R A 4R F F A A A 3R 2R A A A A 0 / 8
Grand Slam SR 0 / 3 0 / 4 0 / 3 1 / 4 0 / 3 0 / 2 0 / 4 0 / 3 0 / 2 0 / 0 0 / 0 0 / 3 0 / 3 0 / 2 0 / 2 0 / 2 0 / 1 1 / 41

A=did not participate in the tournament

Open-Era finals[edit]

Singles[edit]

Outcome No. Date Championship Surface Opponent in the final Score in the final
Runner-up 1. 1968 Wimbledon, London Grass Australia Rod Laver 3–6, 4–6, 2–6
Runner-up 2. 1969 Hobart, Australia Grass Australia Fred Stolle 3–6, 6–0, 4–6, 1–6
Winner 1. 1969 Sydney, Australia Grass Australia Rod Laver 6–4, 4–6, 9–7, 12–10
Winner 2. 1969 Auckland, New Zealand Grass Australia Rod Laver 6–1, 6–4, 4–6, 6–3
Runner-up 3. 1969 Philadelphia WCT, U.S. Carpet Australia Rod Laver 5–7, 4–6, 4–6
Runner-up 4. 1969 Rome, Italy Clay Australia John Newcombe 3–6, 6–4, 2–6, 7–5, 3–6
Winner 3. 1969 Hamburg, Germany Clay Netherlands Tom Okker 6–1, 5–7, 8–6, 7–5
Runner-up 5. 1969 US Open, New York Grass Australia Rod Laver 9–7, 1–6, 2–6, 2–6
Runner-up 6. 1969 Wembley, UK Carpet Australia Rod Laver 4–6, 1–6, 3–6
Runner-up 7. 1970 Philadelphia WCT, US Carpet Australia Rod Laver 3–6, 6–8, 2–6
Winner 4. 1970 Dublin, Ireland Grass Australia Rod Laver 6–3, 6–1
Winner 5. 1970 Gstaad, Switzerland Clay Netherlands Tom Okker 7–5, 7–5, 6–3
Winner 6. 1970 Boston, US Hard Australia Rod Laver 3–6, 6–4, 1–6, 6–2, 6–2
Runner-up 8. 1970 US Open, New York Grass Australia Ken Rosewall 6–2, 4–6, 6–7, 3–6
Winner 7. 1972 Washington WCT, US Clay United States Marty Riessen 3–6, 7–6, 6–4
Runner-up 9. 1974 Bombay, India Clay New Zealand Onny Parun 3–6, 3–6, 6–7
Runner-up 10. 1975 Nottingham, England Grass Netherlands Tom Okker 1–6, 6–3, 3–6
Winner 8. 1976 Charlotte WCT, US Carpet United States Vitas Gerulaitis 6–3, 3–6, 6–1
Winner 9. 1976 Sydney Outdoor, Australia Grass United States Dick Stockton 6–3, 3–6, 6–3, 6–4
Runner-up 11. 1977 Brisbane, Australia Grass United States Vitas Gerulaitis 7–6, 1–6, 1–6, 5–7
Winner 10. 1978 London/Queen's Club, England Grass United States John McEnroe 8–6, 9–7

Doubles[edit]

Outcome No. Date Championship Surface Partner Opponents in the final Score in the final
Winner 1. 1968 Wimbledon, London Grass Australia John Newcombe Australia Ken Rosewall
Australia Fred Stolle
3–6, 8–6, 5–7, 14–12, 6–3
Runner-up 1. 1968 Hamburg, Germany Clay Australia John Newcombe Netherlands Tom Okker
United States Marty Riessen
4–6, 4–6, 5–7
Runner-up 2. 1968 Hobart, Australia Grass Australia Fred Stolle Australia Mal Anderson
United Kingdom Roger Taylor
5–7, 3–6, 6–4, 6–1, 4–6
Runner-up 3. 1969 Philadelphia WCT, U.S. Carpet Australia John Newcombe Netherlands Tom Okker
United States Marty Riessen
6–8, 4–6
Winner 2. 1969 French Open, Paris Clay Australia John Newcombe Australia Roy Emerson
Australia Rod Laver
4–6, 6–1, 3–6, 6–4, 6–4
Winner 3. 1969 Wimbledon, London Grass Australia John Newcombe Netherlands Tom Okker
United States Marty Riessen
7–5, 11–9, 6–3
Winner 4. 1970 Wimbledon, London Grass Australia John Newcombe Australia Ken Rosewall
Australia Fred Stolle
10–8, 6–3, 6–1
Winner 5. 1970 Louisville, U.S. Hard Australia John Newcombe Australia Roy Emerson
Australia Rod Laver
8–6, 5–7, 6–4
Winner 6. 1971 Australian Open, Melbourne Grass Australia John Newcombe Netherlands Tom Okker
United States Marty Riessen
6–2, 7–6
Winner 7. 1971 Miami WCT, U.S. Hard Australia John Newcombe Australia Roy Emerson
Australia Rod Laver
7–6, 7–6
Runner-up 4. 1971 Chicago WCT, U.S. Carpet Australia John Newcombe Netherlands Tom Okker
United States Marty Riessen
6–7, 6–4, 6–7
Winner 8. 1971 Rome, Italy Clay Australia John Newcombe Spain Andrés Gimeno
United Kingdom Roger Taylor
6–4, 6–4
Winner 9. 1971 Tehran WCT, Iran Clay Australia John Newcombe Australia Bob Carmichael
Australia Ray Ruffels
6–4, 6–7, 6–1
Runner-up 5. 1972 Richmond WCT, U.S. Carpet Australia John Newcombe Netherlands Tom Okker
United States Marty Riessen
6–7, 6–7
Runner-up 6. 1972 Philadelphia WCT, U.S. Carpet Australia John Newcombe United States Arthur Ashe
United States Robert Lutz
3–6, 7–6, 3–6
Runner-up 7. 1972 Charlotte WCT, U.S. Clay Australia John Newcombe Netherlands Tom Okker
United States Marty Riessen
4–6, 6–4, 6–7
Runner-up 8. 1972 Las Vegas WCT, U.S. Hard Australia John Newcombe Australia Roy Emerson
Australia Rod Laver
DEF
Winner 10. 1972 St. Louis WCT, U.S. Carpet Australia John Newcombe Australia John Alexander
Australia Phil Dent
7–6, 6–2
Runner-up 9. 1972 Washington WCT, U.S. Clay Australia John Newcombe Netherlands Tom Okker
United States Marty Riessen
6–3, 3–6, 2–6
Winner 11. 1972 Boston WCT, U.S. Hard Australia John Newcombe United States Arthur Ashe
United States Robert Lutz
6–3, 1–6, 7–6
Winner 12. 1974 Toronto WCT, Canada Carpet Mexico Raúl Ramírez Netherlands Tom Okker
United States Marty Riessen
6–3, 2–6, 6–4
Runner-up 10. 1974 Monte Carlo WCT, Monaco Clay Spain Manuel Orantes Australia John Alexander
Australia Phil Dent
6–7, 6–4, 6–7, 3–6
Winner 13. 1974 Wimbledon, London Grass Australia John Newcombe United States Robert Lutz
United States Stan Smith
8–6, 6–4, 6–4
Runner-up 11. 1974 Sydney Indoor, Australia Hard (i) Australia John Newcombe Australia Ross Case
Australia Geoff Masters
4–6, 4–6
Winner 14. 1976 Australian Open, Melbourne Grass Australia John Newcombe Australia Ross Case
Australia Geoff Masters
7–6, 6–4
Winner 15. 1976 Charlotte WCT, U.S. Carpet Australia John Newcombe United States Vitas Gerulaitis
United States Gene Mayer
6–3, 7–5
Winner 16. 1977 Australian Open, Melbourne Grass United States Arthur Ashe United States Charlie Pasarell
United States Erik Van Dillen
6–4, 6–4
Runner-up 12. 1977 Richmond WCT, U.S. Carpet Australia Ross Case Poland Wojtek Fibak
Netherlands Tom Okker
4–6, 4–6
Runner-up 13. 1977 Toronto Indoor WCT, Canada Carpet Australia Ross Case Poland Wojtek Fibak
Netherlands Tom Okker
4–6, 1–6
Winner 17. 1977 Sydney Indoor, Australia Hard (i) Australia John Newcombe Australia Ross Case
Australia Geoff Masters
6–7, 6–3, 6–1
Winner 18. 1978 Sydney Indoor, Australia Hard (i) Australia John Newcombe Australia Mark Edmondson
Australia John Marks
6–4, 6–3

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b United States Lawn Tennis Association (1972). Official Encyclopedia of Tennis (First Edition), p. 428.
  2. ^ "Sporting Hall of Fame – Roche, Tony". www.wagga.nsw.gov.au. Museum of the Riverina. Retrieved 13 November 2014. 
  3. ^ "Big break for leading junior.". Australian Women's Weekly (National Library of Australia). 8 May 1963. p. 54 Supplement: Teenagers' Weekly. Retrieved 30 October 2012. 
  4. ^ "Newcombe: One Of 'Biggest Pacts'". St. Petersburg Times. 3 January 1968. 
  5. ^ "Tennis Stars Sign". The Age. 5 January 1968. 
  6. ^ Wind, Herbert Warren (1979). Game, Set, and Match : The Tennis Boom of the 1960s and 70s (1. ed. ed.). New York: Dutton. pp. 65–70. ISBN 0525111409. 
  7. ^ "World Tennis title is better thrill than expected". The Prescott Courier. 27 August 1974. 
  8. ^ "Lleyton Hewitt hires celebrated tennis coach Tony Roche". International Herald Tribune. 18 July 2007. Retrieved 19 July 2007. 
  9. ^ "Roche, Anthony Dalton, MBE". It's an Honour. Retrieved 17 December 2013. 
  10. ^ "ROCHE, Anthony Dalton (Tony), AO". It's an Honour. Retrieved 17 December 2013. 
  11. ^ "Hall of Famers – Tony Roche". International Tennis Hall of Fame. 
  12. ^ "Tony Roche AO MBE". Sport Australia Hall of Fame. Retrieved 17 December 2013. 
  13. ^ "Roche, Tony: Australian Sports Medal". It's an Honour. Retrieved 17 December 2013. 
  14. ^ "ROCHE, Tony Dalton: Centenary Medal". It's an Honour. Retrieved 17 December 2013. 

External links[edit]