Abe Segal

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Abe Segal
Full name Alan Abraham Segal
Country (sports) South Africa South Africa
Born (1930-10-23)23 October 1930
Johannesburg, South Africa
Died 4 April 2016(2016-04-04) (aged 85)
Cape Town, South Africa
Plays Left-handed (one-handed backhand)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open 2R (1954)
French Open 3R (1955, 1957, 1961, 1962)
Wimbledon QF (1964)
US Open 4R (1956)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open QF (1954)
French Open F (1958, 1963)
Wimbledon SF (1963)
Mixed doubles
Grand Slam Mixed Doubles results
Australian Open QF (1964)
Wimbledon QF (1964)
Team competitions
Davis Cup FEu (1965)

Alan Abraham Segal (23 October 1930 – 4 April 2016) was a South African tennis player. During the 1950s and 1960s, he was the doubles partner of Gordon Forbes. Together, they were considered one of the best doubles teams in the world.[1]

Due to South Africa's policy of Apartheid, Alex Metreveli and István Gulyás both refused to compete in the 1964 Wimbledon against Segal, a white South African. This prompted the International Lawn Tennis Federation to pass a resolution prohibiting racial discrimination and withdrawing from a tournament except for "health or bereavement" reasons.[2]

In 1951 he won the singles title at the Irish Open defeating Guy Jackson in the final in straight sets.

He played for the South African Davis Cup team in 19 ties in the years 1955, 57, 59, 61-65 and compiled a record of 24 wins and 14 losses.

After retiring from tennis, Segal took up painting.[3] In 2008 he published a memoir titled Hey Big Boy!.[4][5]

Segal died of cancer on 4 April 2016 at the age of 85.[6][7]

Grand Slam finals[edit]

Doubles (2 runner-ups)[edit]

Outcome Year Championship Surface Partner Opponents Score
Runner-up 1958 French Championships Clay Australia Robert Howe Australia Ashley Cooper
Australia Neale Fraser
6–3, 6–8, 3–6, 5–7
Runner-up 1963 French Championships Clay South Africa Gordon Forbes Australia Roy Emerson
Spain Manuel Santana
2–6, 4–6, 4–6


  1. ^ Plimpton, George (1992). The Norton Book of Sports. W. W. Norton & Company. p. 205. ISBN 978-0-393-03040-2. 
  2. ^ Djata, Sundiata A. (2008). Blacks at the net: Black achievement in the history of tennis. Syracuse University Press. p. 63. ISBN 978-0-8156-0898-1. 
  3. ^ Bills, Peter (25 March 2009). "Abe Segal & Gordon Forbes: 'sport was all fun and now it almost isn’t at all'". The Independent. Retrieved 13 June 2010. 
  4. ^ "Hey, big boy! : [a legacy of laughs by an ex No. 1]". Worldcat. 
  5. ^ "Tennis KGB Style" (PDF). Sports Illustrated. August 2008. 
  6. ^ "Death of SA tennis legend Abe Segal a great loss". www.tennissa.co.za. Tennis South Africa. 5 April 2016. 
  7. ^ "Tennis legend Abe Segal dies". Supersport. 5 April 2016. 

External links[edit]