|Born||19 May 1964|
|Height||1.90 m (6 ft 3 in)|
|Plays||Right-handed (two-handed backhand)|
|Highest ranking||No. 4 (22 February 1988)|
|Grand Slam Singles results|
|Australian Open||F (1989)|
|French Open||SF (1987)|
|US Open||F (1986)|
|Tour Finals||RR (1987)|
|WCT Finals||W (1987)|
|Olympic Games||W (1988)|
|Highest ranking||No. 4 (7 March 1988)|
|Grand Slam Doubles results|
|Australian Open||4R (1987)|
|French Open||4R (1989)|
|Wimbledon||3R (1987, 1989)|
|US Open||4R (1987, 1988)|
|Other doubles tournaments|
|Tour Finals||W (1987)|
|Olympic Games||SF (1988)|
|Davis Cup||SF (1985, 1986)|
|Hopman Cup||W (1989)|
Miloslav Mečíř (Slovak pronunciation: [ˈmilɔslaʊ̯ ˈmɛtʃiːɾ]; born 19 May 1964) is a former professional tennis player from Slovakia. He won the men's singles gold medal at the 1988 Olympic Games, where he represented Czechoslovakia, and played in two Grand Slam singles finals. In 1987 he won the WCT Finals, the season-ending championship for the World Championship Tennis tour.
He reached two ATP finals in 1984 and began 1985 by beating Jimmy Connors in the semifinal at Philadelphia, before losing to world No. 1 John McEnroe in the final. He won his first ATP singles title in Rotterdam later that year, and ended 1985 ranked just outside the world's top 10.
He consolidated his position as a world class player in 1986, beating rising Stefan Edberg in straight sets at Wimbledon, before losing to defending champion Boris Becker in the quarterfinals. He reached his first Grand Slam final at the US Open later that year, beating Mats Wilander and Boris Becker along the way to the final, where he faced fellow Czechoslovak, defending champion and world No. 1, Ivan Lendl. The 1986 US Open was notable for the fact that four players from Czechoslovakia competed in the two singles finals for men and women – Mečíř and Lendl, Helena Suková and Martina Navratilova. Lendl won the match in straight sets 6–4, 6–2, 6–0. Mečíř's 1986 US Open final appearance was the last major final to see a player still using a wooden racket.
Mečíř improved further in 1987, winning six singles and six doubles titles, notably winning the WCT Finals in Dallas, where he defeated John McEnroe in four sets. He met Lendl again in three high-profile matches that year, winning the final of the Lipton International Players Championships in Key Biscayne, Florida, while Lendl won the final of the German Open in Hamburg and the semifinals of the French Open.
By this time, Mečíř's sedate playing style was known to frustrate a lot of the more-powerful top ranked players. The Swedish players, in particular, were said to dislike playing against him.
Mečíř was on top form at Wimbledon in 1988, where he defeated Mats Wilander in the quarterfinal. It was Wilander's only Grand Slam singles defeat of the year (he won the 1988 Australian Open, French Open and US Open) yet Mečíř beat him in straight sets. He took a two-set lead in the semifinal against Edberg with a similar display, and later led by a break of serve in the final set, but Edberg eventually wore him down on the way to his first Wimbledon crown.
The highlight of Mečíř's career came later in 1988 when he was selected to represent Czechoslovakia in the Seoul Olympics. He defeated Eric Jelen, Jeremy Bates, Guy Forget and Michiel Schapers and then in the men's singles semifinals he exacted revenge over Wimbledon champion Edberg, in a five-set match. He then met Tim Mayotte of the U.S. in the men's singles final and won in four sets 3–6, 6–2, 6–4, 6–2 to claim the gold medal. He also won a bronze medal in the men's doubles, partnering Milan Šrejber.
In 1989, Mečíř reached his second Grand Slam final at the Australian Open in Melbourne. Again he came up against Lendl and lost in straight sets. It was a tactical victory for Lendl, whose win saw him to reclaim the world No. 1 ranking from Wilander. After the match, Lendl apologized to the crowd, explaining that he and coach Tony Roche had decided the best tactic against Mečíř was to hit shots deep and down the centre of the court, denying his opponent the angles he thrived on.
During his career, Mečíř won 11 singles titles and nine doubles titles. His career-high world ranking in both singles and doubles was world No. 4. His final career singles title came in 1989 at Indian Wells. His last doubles title was also won in 1989 in Rotterdam.
Throughout most of 1989 and into 1990, Mečíř suffered from a worsening back injury and he retired in July 1990, aged just 26.
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Mečíř was a finesse player whose career straddled the transition from wooden and metal racquets towards modern graphite composites. He was noted for his touch shots as well as the ability to disguise his shots, particularly his two-handed backhand. His court coverage and graceful footwork earned him the nickname "The Big Cat". The French called him "Le Prestidigitateur" (The Conjuror).
Many top players used to cite Mečíř as the one player they most enjoyed watching because of his beautifully simple style and touch. He was known as the "Swede Killer" for the success that he had against Swedish players, especially Mats Wilander.
Grand Slam finals
Singles: 2 (0–2)
|Loss||1986||US Open||Hard||Ivan Lendl||4–6, 2–6, 0–6|
|Loss||1989||Australian Open||Hard||Ivan Lendl||2–6, 2–6, 2–6|
WCT Year–end championship finals
Singles: 1 (1–0)
|Win||1987||Dallas||Carpet (i)||John McEnroe||
6–0, 3–6, 6–2, 6–2
Singles: 1 (1 gold medal)
|Gold||1988||Seoul||Hard||Tim Mayotte||3–6, 6–2, 6–4, 6–2|
ATP Career finals
Singles: 24 (11 titles, 13 runner-ups)
|Grand Slam (0–2)|
|Year-end championships – WCT (1–0)|
|Grand Prix Super Series (3–4)|
|ATP Grand Prix (6–7)|
|Loss||0–1||Dec 1983||Adelaide, Australia||Grass||Mike Bauer||6–3, 4–6, 1–6|
|Loss||0–2||Sep 1984||Palermo, Italy||Clay||Francesco Cancellotti||0–6, 3–6|
|Loss||0–3||Oct 1984||Cologne, Germany||Carpet (i)||Joakim Nyström||6–7, 2–6|
|Loss||0–4||Jan 1985||Philadelphia, U.S.||Carpet (i)||John McEnroe||3–6, 6–7(5–7), 1–6|
|Win||1–4||Mar 1985||Rotterdam, Netherlands||Carpet (i)||Jakob Hlasek||6–1, 6–2|
|Win||2–4||Apr 1985||Hamburg, Germany||Clay||Henrik Sundström||6–4, 6–1, 6–4|
|Loss||2–5||May 1985||Rome, Italy||Clay||Yannick Noah||3–6, 6–3, 2–6, 6–7(4–7)|
|Win||3–5||Apr 1986||Kitzbühel, Austria||Clay||Andrés Gómez||6–4, 4–6, 6–1, 2–6, 6–3|
|Loss||3–6||Aug 1986||US Open, New York||Hard||Ivan Lendl||4–6, 2–6, 0–6|
|Loss||3–7||Sep 1986||Hamburg, Germany||Clay||Henri Leconte||2–6, 7–5, 4–6, 2–6|
|Win||4–7||Jan 1987||Auckland, New Zealand||Hard||Michiel Schapers||6–2, 6–3, 6–4|
|Win||5–7||Jan 1987||Sydney, Australia||Grass||Peter Doohan||6–2, 6–4|
|Win||6–7||Feb 1987||Miami, USA||Hard||Ivan Lendl||7–5, 6–2, 7–5|
|Loss||6–8||Mar 1987||Milan, Italy||Carpet (i)||Boris Becker||4–6, 3–6|
|Win||7–8||Apr 1987||WCT Finals, Dallas||Carpet (i)||John McEnroe||6–0, 3–6, 6–2, 6–2|
|Loss||7–9||Apr 1987||Hamburg, Germany||Clay||Ivan Lendl||1–6, 3–6, 3–6|
|Win||8–9||Jul 1987||Stuttgart, Germany||Clay||Jan Gunnarsson||6–0, 6–2|
|Win||9–9||Jul 1987||Hilversum, Netherlands||Clay||Guillermo Pérez Roldán||6–4, 1–6, 6–3, 6–2|
|Loss||9–10||Aug 1987||Kitzbühel, Austria||Clay||Emilio Sánchez||4–6, 1–6, 6–4, 1–6|
|Loss||9–11||Feb 1988||Rotterdam, Netherlands||Carpet (i)||Stefan Edberg||6–7(5–7), 2–6|
|Loss||9–12||Mar 1988||Orlando, U.S.||Hard||Andrei Chesnokov||6–7(6–8), 1–6|
|Win||10–12||Sep 1988||Olympic Games, Seoul||Hard||Tim Mayotte||3–6, 6–2, 6–4, 6–2|
|Loss||10–13||Jan 1989||Australian Open, Melbourne||Hard||Ivan Lendl||2–6, 2–6, 2–6|
|Win||11–13||Mar 1989||Indian Wells, U.S.||Hard||Yannick Noah||3–6, 2–6, 6–1, 6–2, 6–3|
Doubles: 12 (9 titles, 3 runner-ups)
|Grand Slam (0–0)|
|Year-end championships – ATP (1–0)|
|Grand Prix Super Series (1–1)|
|ATP Grand Prix (7–2)|
|Win||1.||28 July 1986||Hilversum, Netherlands||Clay||Tomáš Šmíd|| Tom Nijssen
|Win||2.||6 October 1986||Toulouse, France||Hard (i)||Tomáš Šmíd|| Jakob Hlasek
|6–2, 3–6, 6–4|
|Winner||3.||27 April 1987||Hamburg, Germany||Clay||Tomáš Šmíd|| Claudio Mezzadri
|4–6, 7–6, 6–2|
|Loss||1.||11 May 1987||Rome, Italy||Clay||Tomáš Šmíd|| Guy Forget
|2–6, 7–6, 3–6|
|Win||4.||27 July 1987||Hilversum, Netherlands||Clay||Wojciech Fibak|| Tom Nijssen
|7–6, 5–7, 6–2|
|Loss||2.||3 August 1987||Kitzbühel, Austria||Clay||Tomáš Šmíd|| Sergio Casal
|Win||5.||10 August 1987||Prague, Czechoslovakia||Clay||Tomáš Šmíd|| Stanislav Birner
|6–3, 6–7, 6–3|
|Win||6.||21 September 1987||Barcelona, Spain||Clay||Tomáš Šmíd|| Javier Frana
|Win||7.||9 November 1987||Wembley, U.K.||Carpet (i)||Tomáš Šmíd|| Ken Flach
|Win||8.||7 December 1987||Masters Doubles, New York||Carpet (i)||Tomáš Šmíd|| Ken Flach
|6–4, 7–5, 6–7(5–7), 6–3|
|Loss||3.||15 February 1988||Milan, Italy||Carpet (i)||Tomáš Šmíd|| Boris Becker
|Win||9.||6 February 1989||Rotterdam, Netherlands||Carpet (i)||Milan Šrejber|| Jan Gunnarsson
Grand Slam singles performance timeline
|Tournament||1983||1984||1985||1986||1987||1988||1989||1990||Career SR||Career Win-Loss|
|Australian Open||1R||2R||A||NH||QF||A||F||4R||0 / 5||12–5|
|French Open||A||1R||3R||2R||SF||A||1R||1R||0 / 6||8–6|
|Wimbledon||A||2R||1R||QF||3R||SF||3R||2R||0 / 7||15–7|
|US Open||A||A||2R||F||QF||3R||3R||A||0 / 5||15–5|
|Grand Slam Win-Loss||0–1||2–3||3–3||11–3||14–4||7–2||10–4||4–3||N/A||50–23|
|Grand Slam SR||0 / 1||0 / 3||0 / 3||0 / 3||0 / 4||0 / 2||0 / 4||0 / 3||0 / 23||N/A|
Grand Prix singles tournament timeline
|Indian Wells||A||A||A||A||QF||QF||W||1R||1 / 4|
|Miami||NH||NH||2R||A||W||SF||2R||A||1 / 4|
|Monte Carlo||A||A||A||3R||A||A||A||A||0 / 1|
|Rome||A||1R||F||3R||1R||A||1R||A||0 / 5|
|Hamburg||A||A||W||F||F||A||A||A||1 / 3|
|Canada||A||A||A||A||A||A||1R||A||0 / 1|
|Cincinnati||A||A||A||A||A||1R||A||A||0 / 1|
|Paris||A||A||A||1R||2R||2R||2R||A||0 / 4|
|The Masters||A||A||A||A||RR||A||A||A||0 / 1|
|Grand Prix SR||0 / 0||0 / 1||1 / 3||0 / 4||1 / 5||0 / 4||1 / 5||0 / 1||3 / 23|
- Note these events were known as The Championship Super Series (single Week) from 1970 to 1989 as part of the Grand Prix Tennis Tour they became known as the Championship Series (single week) by the ATP from 1990 to 1993 eventually becoming the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 as they are known today
NH = tournament not held
A = did not participate in the tournament
SR = the ratio of the number of Masters Series singles tournaments won to the number of those tournaments played
- "ITF Tennis – Mens Circuit – Player Biography: MECIR, Miloslav (SVK)". Archived from the original on 22 September 2013. Retrieved 18 August 2012.
- Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill; et al. "Miloslav Mečíř". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on 10 December 2008. Retrieved 23 September 2020.
- "Stefan Edberg's matches on tape".