7 To Join Tennis Hall of Fame July 10

July 2, 2010

Newport, RI — The International Tennis Hall of Fame will present the highest honor available in tennis to seven legends of the game on Saturday, July 10 at 12:30 p.m. The Induction Ceremony will take place on the historic grass courts of Bill Talbert Center Court at the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, Rhode Island. The Class of 2010 honors some of the most remarkable doubles players in the history of the game, along with two individuals who were instrumental in shaping the history and growth of tennis.

Elected in the Recent Player category will be Gigi Fernandez and Natasha Zvereva, who won 38 titles together, including 14 Grand Slam events; and Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde, the legendary Australian doubles team who amassed 61 ATP doubles titles including 11 Grand Slam championships. In the Master Player category, 12-time Grand Slam tournament champion Owen Davidson has been elected. In the Contributor category, Derek Hardwick, past chairman of the British Lawn Tennis Association, who was instrumental in the transition to the Open Era, will be inducted posthumously. Also in the Contributor category, Brad Parks, the pioneering founder of wheelchair tennis, will be the first ever wheelchair tennis inductee.

“We are delighted to honor these professionals who have made a remarkable impact on tennis, both on and off the courts. Gigi, Natasha, Todd, Mark and Owen achieved extraordinary results at all levels of competition, proving themselves to be true champions and legends in tennis. Brad excelled on the courts as well, and he developed an entirely new aspect of the game for the world to enjoy. Derek’s vision and leadership abilities were instrumental in elevating the game to the global sport that it is today,” said Christopher Clouser, chairman of the International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum. “All seven of these individuals have left a positive impact on the game of tennis, and we are pleased to recognize their successes and contributions.”

Since 1955, the International Tennis Hall of Fame has honored 218 people representing 19 countries, inclusive of the Class of 2010. The International Tennis Hall of Fame features a comprehensive tennis Museum that commemorates the heroes and heroines of the game and chronicles the history of the sport from its 12th century beginnings through present day. Five new exhibits paying tribute to the Class of 2010 have recently been installed and will be showcased for one year.

Gigi Fernandez & Natasha Zvereva: Tennis’ Yin and Yang chronicles the women’s success despite their cultural differences and features unique pieces such as the Adidas sports bras that the women famously wore when they won the 1992 US Open. In The Woodies: Australia’s Dynamic Duo, the Museum explores the remarkably successful partnership and camaraderie between the pair, as featured in a scrapbook on display which was made by a fan during the height of The Woodies’ career. In Owen Davidson: Australia’s Esteemed Statesman, the exhibit reviews one of the most successful doubles careers in tennis history with commentary by fellow Australian legend Fred Stolle. Brad Parks: Wheelchair Tennis Pioneer highlights how Parks’ leadership crafted the evolution of a game that has become one of the most successful wheelchair sports in the world, and showcases Parks’ 1995 Gold Medal from the Paralympic Games in Barcelona. Finally, Derek Hardwick: Visionary for Open Tennis traces the remarkable story of how Hardwick reshaped the tennis world, enabling the access and widespread interest in the game that we know today.

As part of the ceremony, a presenter selected by the inductees will offer a formal speech focusing on the personal attributes and the professional career of the individual. Fernandez and Zvereva will be presented by Hall of Famer and fellow doubles star Pam Shriver. Woodbridge and Woodforde will be presented by Ray Ruffels, who coached the duo for 8 years. Davidson will be presented by Hall of Famer Fred Stolle. Hardwick will be presented posthumously by Hall of Fame President and 1970 Hall of Famer Tony Trabert. Parks will be presented by Bob Shafer, a retired Wilson Sporting Goods executive who supported Parks as a sponsor.

The International Tennis Hall of Fame’s Class of 2010 Induction Ceremony will be held in conjunction with the Campbell’s Hall of Fame Tennis Championships, an ATP World Tour event to be held July 5 – 11, 2010. Tickets for the Class of 2010 Induction Ceremony and the tournament are available now on or by calling 866-914-FAME (3263).