Arthur Ashe

Tennis Player
Born Jul 10, 1943

Arthur Robert Ashe, Jr. was a World No. 1 professional tennis player. He won three Grand Slam titles, ranking him among the best tennis players from the United States. Ashe, an African American, was the first black player ever selected to the United States Davis Cup team and the only black man ever to win the singles title at Wimbledon, the US Open, and the Australian Open. He retired in 1980. He was ranked World No.… Read More

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1943 Birth Arthur Ashe was born in Richmond, Virginia, to Arthur Ashe Sr. and Mattie Cordell Cunningham Ashe on July 10, 1943. … Read More
In March 1950, Ashe's mother Mattie died from complications related to a toxemic pregnancy (now known as pre-eclampsia) at the age of 27. … Read More
1953 9 Years Old …  Ashe was coached and mentored by Johnson at his tennis summer camp home in Lynchburg, Virginia from 1953 when Ashe was age 10, until 1960. … Read More


1958 14 Years Old In 1958, Ashe became the first African-American to play in the Maryland boys' championships. … Read More
1960 16 Years Old In December 1960 and again in 1963, Ashe featured in Sports Illustrated, appearing in their Faces in the Crowd segment.
1963 19 Years Old 1 More Event
He became the first African-American to win the National Junior Indoor tennis title and was awarded a tennis scholarship to the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) in 1963. … Read More


1965 - 1966 2 More Events
1968 24 Years Old 1 More Event
1968 was another groundbreaking year for Ashe. … Read More
1969 - 1970 2 More Events
1971 27 Years Old In March 1971, Ashe reached the final of the Australian Open again but lost in straight sets to Ken Rosewall. … Read More
1972 28 Years Old In 1972, due to a dispute between the ILTF and the WCT, Ashe, as one of the 32 contracted WCT players, was barred from taking part in any ILTF Grand Prix tennis circuit tournaments from January to July. … Read More


1973 30 Years Old 1 More Event
In June 1973, as a result of an ATP boycott, Ashe was one of 13 seeded players and 81 players in total who withdrew from the Wimbledon tournament to much public criticism. … Read More
He went on to become its elected president in 1974.
1975 32 Years Old 1 More Event
In May 1975, Ashe beat Bjorn Borg to win the season-ending championship WCT Finals in Dallas, Texas.
Ashe played for a few more years and won the Australian Open doubles with Tony Roche in January 1977, but a left foot heel injury requiring surgery a month later and subsequent long-term rehabilitation saw his world ranking drop to a lowly 257th before a remarkable comeback saw him rise back to 14th in the world again at the age of 35.
In his 1979 autobiography, Jack Kramer, the long-time tennis promoter and a world no. 1 player himself in the 1940s, ranked Ashe as one of the 21 best players of all time.
1981 38 Years Old After his retirement, Ashe took on many roles, including writing for Time magazine and The Washington Post, commentating for ABC Sports, founding the National Junior Tennis League, and serving as captain of the U.S. Davis Cup team from 1981-1985.


1985 42 Years Old 1 More Event
He was elected to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1985. … Read More
1986 - 1988 2 More Events
1989 46 Years Old In March 1989 Ashe's father died of a stroke at age 68.
In 1992, a friend of Ashe who worked for USA Today heard that he was ill and called Ashe to confirm the story.


On February 6, 1993, Ashe died from AIDS-related pneumonia at New York Hospital.
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