Three receive commemorative HoF rings

April 9, 2011

NEWPORT, R.I. — Extraordinary clay court competitor and Texas native Nancy Richey and Australian tennis legends Roy Emerson and Owen Davidson have achieved success at the greatest levels of tennis, ranging from capturing Grand Slam victories to setting world records and achieving top world rankings. In recognition of their success, the three stars have already been honored with the highest honor in the sport – induction to the International Tennis Hall of Fame. In a special ceremony today at the US Men’s Clay Court Championship in Houston, this important achievement was celebrated once again with the presentation of their official Hall of Fame rings.

The one-of-a-kind rings will be presented to Hall of Famers at tennis events around the world over the next several years to mark their achievement of Hall of Fame induction. The personalized rings bear a green stone set in gold, to complement the Hall of Fame’s brand colors. In addition, the rings are etched with each honoree’s name and induction year, and the Hall of Fame logo. Richey was inducted to the Hall of Fame in 2003, Emerson in 1982 and Davidson in 2010.

Christopher E. Clouser, chairman of the International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum presented the rings to Emerson, Richey, and Davidson on Center Court at the US Men’s Clay Court Championship. Also participating in the ring ceremony was Van Barry, tournament director for the Houston tournament.


“Nancy, Roy and Owen have all won the most coveted titles in tennis and have achieved rankings among the best players in the sport. As Hall of Famers, they are among an elite group of athletes and contributors. We are pleased to be able to recognize this achievement with this special ring, which only the most successful and influential individuals in tennis will have the honor of wearing,” said Clouser.

The International Tennis Hall of Fame rings have been generously underwritten by The Bruce T. Halle Family of Scottsdale, Arizona. Bruce, founder of Discount Tire, and his wife Diane, a philanthropist, are tennis enthusiasts and they have generously supported communities in the areas where Discount Tire is located, and beyond, for many years.

Nancy Richey, a Texas native from San Angelo, recorded a remarkable 69 singles titles during her career, including a record six consecutive U.S. Women’s Clay Court Championships. Richey won the Australian Championship in 1967 and the French Open in 1968, and also captured four doubles titles at Wimbledon (1966), the French Open (1968) and the U.S. Nationals (1965, 1966). She was an active Fed Cup player and helped lead the United States team to victory in 1969. Richey and her brother, Cliff, were the first brother-sister pair to rise to the top of American tennis, having both attained the No. 1 ranking among United States players. Richey’s highest world ranking was No. 2, and she was within the world Top 10 for 11 years, spanning 1963-1975.

Australian legend Roy Emerson was regarded as tennis’ model of fitness and sportsmanship during his successful career that spanned amateur and open eras. Fondly known as “Emmo,” he captured a staggering 12 Grand Slam singles titles and 16 Grand Slam doubles titles between 1959 and 1971, and he is still the only male player to have won both singles and doubles at all four Grand Slams. Emerson was ranked in the world Top 10 nine years in a row, beginning in 1959 and achieved the No. 1 ranking in 1964 and 1965.

Owen Davidson, also an Australian tennis great, is one of just 13 people who have won a calendar-year Grand Slam at the Tour level, which he achieved in mixed doubles in 1967 when partnered with Lesley Turner Bowrey and Billie Jean King. His 15-year career was highlighted by 12 Grand Slam titles. “Davo,” as he is known, went on to win the Australian Open Doubles with Ken Rosewall in 1972, and the US Open doubles with John Newcombe in 1973.

Additional International Tennis Hall of Fame rings will be presented at tennis events around the world in the coming years. Presently, there are 84 Hall of Famers living in 16 different countries, a testament to the global reach of the game. Upcoming ring presentations are scheduled for the Barcelona Open BancSabadell, during the annual Hall of Fame Weekend in Newport, which celebrates Hall of Fame Induction, and at the Farmers Classic in Los Angeles.

Located in Newport, Rhode Island, the International Tennis Hall of Fame is a non-profit institution dedicated to preserving the history of tennis and honoring the game’s greatest heroes. The International Tennis Hall of Fame has inducted 218 individuals from 19 different countries since 1955. In addition, the Hall of Fame provides a landmark for tennis enthusiasts, offering an extensive museum that chronicles the history of the sport and its stars, historic grass tennis courts that date back to 1880 and are open to the public, an ATP World Tour tournament and the annual Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony in July, and numerous public events year-round.

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