Wightman Cup

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The Wightman Cup was a team tennis competition for women contested from 1923 through 1989 (except during World War II) between teams from the United States and Great Britain. U.S. player Hazel Hotchkiss Wightman wanted to generate international interest in women's tennis the way Davis Cup did for men's. In 1920, she donated a sterling vase to the United States Lawn Tennis Association (USLTA) as a prize for an international team competition.[1] Initial efforts to involve teams from all over the world, and in particular France with Suzanne Lenglen, proved unsuccessful due to financial constraints.[2] The USLTA decided to invite Great Britain to challenge for the prize. Each match consisted of seven 'rubbers': five singles rubbers and two doubles.[3] The top two players from each team would face each other in singles, with the matches then reversed. A third singles player from each team would play each other once. Two doubles teams would compete, but no player could play more than one doubles match. The cup always ended with the doubles match played between the two top pairs from each team.

The inaugural competition was played on 11 and 13 August 1923 in the newly constructed stadium at the West Side Tennis Club in Forrest Hills, New York.[4] The matches were played in even years in Britain and in odd years in the U.S. The U.S. matches were played at the West Side Tennis Club in Forest Hills, New York from the first year, 1923, through 1947, and the British matches were played at Wimbledon from the first year, 1924, through 1972.[5] The competition was a two-day event until 1967 when the U.S. event was held over three days in order to generate more revenue. A record 16,000 spectators attended that year.[2] Until 1957 all editions of the Wightman Cup had been played on grass courts, in later years also clay courts, cement and synthetic carpet were used.[2] In 1978, the competition moved indoors to the Royal Albert Hall,[6] was sponsored for the first time,[5] and was called the Carnation Wightman Cup.[6]

The competition was continued through 1989. The USTA and the Lawn Tennis Association jointly announced on February 20, 1990, that the competition would be suspended indefinitely, citing low interest following years of American domination.[7][8][9]

Results[edit]

Total wins:  United States 51 - 10  United Kingdom[10]

Year Location Winner Score
1923[11] Forest Hills, New York  United States 7–0
1924[12] Wimbledon, England  United Kingdom 6–1
1925[13] Forest Hills, New York  United Kingdom 4–3
1926[14] Wimbledon, England  United States 4–3
1927[15] Forest Hills, New York  United States 5–2
1928[16] Wimbledon, England  United Kingdom 4–3
1929[17] Forest Hills, New York  United States 4–3
1930[18] Wimbledon, England  United Kingdom 4–3
1931[19] Forest Hills, New York  United States 5–2
1932[20] Wimbledon, England  United States 4–3
1933[21] Forest Hills, New York  United States 4–3
1934[22] Wimbledon, England  United States 5–2
1935[23] Forest Hills, New York  United States 4–3
1936[24] Wimbledon, England  United States 4–3
1937[25] Forest Hills, New York  United States 6–1
1938[26] Wimbledon, England  United States 5–2
1939[27] Forest Hills, New York  United States 5–2
1940[28]
1945[29]
not held (World War II)
1946[30] Wimbledon, England  United States 7–0
1947[31] Forest Hills, New York  United States 7–0
1948[11] Wimbledon, England  United States 6–1
1949[32] Haverford, Pennsylvania  United States 7–0
1950[11] Wimbledon, England  United States 7–0
1951[11] Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts  United States 6–1
1952[11] Wimbledon, England  United States 7–0
1953[33] Rye, New York  United States 7–0
1954[11] Wimbledon, England  United States 6–0
1955[11] Rye, New York  United States 6–1
1956[11] Wimbledon, England  United States 5–2
1957[11] Sewickley, Pennsylvania  United States 6–1
1958[34] Wimbledon, England  United Kingdom 4–3
1959[11] Sewickley, Pennsylvania  United States 6–1
1960[5][35] Wimbledon, England  United Kingdom 4–3
1961[36] Chicago, Illinois  United States 6–1
1962[11] Wimbledon, England  United States 4–3
1963[11] Cleveland, Ohio  United States 6–1
1964[37] Wimbledon, England  United States 5–2
1965[38] Cleveland, Ohio  United States 5–2
1966[11] Wimbledon, England  United States 4–3
1967[11] Cleveland, Ohio  United States 6–1
1968[11] Wimbledon, England  United Kingdom 4–3
1969[11] Cleveland, Ohio  United States 5–2
1970[11] Wimbledon, England  United States 4–3
1971[11] Cleveland, Ohio  United States 4–3
1972[11] Wimbledon, England  United States 5–2
1973[11] Brookline, Massachusetts  United States 5–2
1974[11] Queensferry, Wales  United Kingdom 6–1
1975[39] Cleveland, Ohio  United Kingdom 5–2
1976[5][11][40] Wimbledon, England  United States 5–2
1977[11] Oakland, California  United States 7–0
1978[6][41][42] Royal Albert Hall, London, England  United Kingdom 4–3
1979[11] West Palm Beach, Florida  United States 7–0
1980[6][11][41] Royal Albert Hall, London, England  United States 5–2
1981[11] Chicago, Illinois  United States 7–0
1982[11] Royal Albert Hall, London, England  United States 6–1
1983[11] Williamsburg, Virginia  United States 6–1
1984[11][41][43] Royal Albert Hall, London, England  United States 5–2
1985[11] Williamsburg, Virginia  United States 7–0
1986[41][44] Royal Albert Hall, London, England  United States 7–0
1987[11] Williamsburg, Virginia  United States 5–2
1988[41][45] Royal Albert Hall, London, England  United States 7–0
1989[10][11] Williamsburg, Virginia  United States 7–0

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Wightman Cup Up Again". The New York Times. January 15, 1922. 
  2. ^ a b c Max Robertson, ed. (1974). The Encyclopedia of Tennis. London: George Allen & Unwin Ltd. pp. 343–346. ISBN 0047960426. 
  3. ^ "Lady Tennis Starts in International Contest". The Morning Leader. Aug 11, 1923. 
  4. ^ USTA, United States Tennis Association (1979). Bill Shannon, ed. Official Encyclopedia of Tennis (Rev. and updated 1st ed. ed.). New York: Harper & Row. p. 362. ISBN 0060144785. 
  5. ^ a b c d "The LTA 1945 to 1988". History. LTA. Retrieved 2008-04-23. 
  6. ^ a b c d "Wightman Cup official programmes 1978 and 1980". 1978-11-02 and 1980-10-30.  Check date values in: |date=, |year= (help).
  7. ^ "No Contest: Wightman Cup Is Canceled", Washington Post, February 21, 1990
  8. ^ "Wightman Cup Stopped". The New York Times. February 21, 1990. 
  9. ^ "British Cancel '90 Wightman Cup". Daily Press. February 21, 1990. 
  10. ^ a b Guinness Tennis Book of World Records[dead link]
  11. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af Collins, Bud (2008). The Bud Collins History of Tennis: An Authoritative Encyclopedia and Record Book. New York, N.Y: New Chapter Press. pp. 517–522. ISBN 0-942257-41-3. 
  12. ^ Time magazine, June 30, 1924.
  13. ^ Time magazine, August 24, 1925.
  14. ^ New York Times, June 19, 1926.
  15. ^ Time magazine, August 22, 1927.
  16. ^ Time magazine, June 25, 1928.
  17. ^ Time magazine, August 19, 1929.
  18. ^ Time magazine, June 23, 1930.
  19. ^ Time magazine, August 17, 1931.
  20. ^ Time magazine, June 20, 1932.
  21. ^ Time magazine, August 13, 1933.
  22. ^ Time magazine, June 25, 1934.
  23. ^ Time magazine, August 26, 1935.
  24. ^ Time magazine, June 22, 1936.
  25. ^ Time magazine, August 30, 1937.
  26. ^ Time magazine, June 20, 1938.
  27. ^ Time magazine, September 4, 1939.
  28. ^ Time magazine, June 24, 1940
  29. ^ Time magazine, September 2, 1946 "For the first time since 1938, the top five U.S. women players...headed for England to play Britain's top women in Wightman Cup competition."
  30. ^ Time magazine, June 24, 1946.
  31. ^ Time magazine, August 25, 1947.
  32. ^ Time magazine, September 19, 1949.
  33. ^ Time magazine, August 10, 1953.
  34. ^ Time magazine, June 23, 1958.
  35. ^ Time magazine, June 20, 1960.
  36. ^ Time magazine, September 1, 1961.
  37. ^ New York Times, June 15, 1964.
  38. ^ New York Times, August 10, 1965.
  39. ^ Washington Post, November 14, 1976. "...to bring the Wightman Cup back to the United States for the first time since 1973."
  40. ^ Washington Post, November 14, 1976.
  41. ^ a b c d e International Herald Tribune, April 25, 1995. "...discontinued in 1990 after the Americans won their 11th straight."
  42. ^ McDermott, Barry (1979-11-12). "A Grim Grip On The Cup". SI Vault. Time Inc. Retrieved 2008-04-23. 
  43. ^ "Wightman Cup Tennis Tied". The New York Times. The New York Times. 1984-11-02. Retrieved 2008-04-23. 
  44. ^ "Scouting; Lloyd Out of Wightman". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. 1986-10-15. Retrieved 2008-04-23. 
  45. ^ "Results Plus". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. 1998-11-06. Retrieved 2008-04-23. 

External links[edit]