I have a question: What percentage of tennis do you think is mental? I always thought it was a minimum of 50 percent and a maximum of 99 percent, depending on whom you play, the tournament and match score.
Look out tennis parents and kids. There is a new contender for U.S. Open honors. He is the star of two picture books by Maura Moynihan, a Florida-based tennis instructor. And talk about growing the game … he is a bear with a parrot pal.
If you think the main job of a sports memoir is to tell the athlete's story in his own voice, and that's a reasonable thesis, then you have to credit Jimmy Connors' book, The Outsider with accomplishing that.
David E. Moe has written a book that will be of use to any tennis player if they are open to a multi-disciplinary guide to improving their game. The Making of a Winner: A Fable About the Power Within takes tidbits from sports psychology, biofeedback and Eastern religions, and weaves them into a short primer on how to play better tennis.
I am supposed to review books about tennis in this space, but every so often, a book comes along that weaves the tennis content with so much other profound content that the tennis parts seem secondary.
Winning Tennis Strokes is a short guidebook to tennis techniques and a splendid general introduction to tennis strokes. With this book, Bill Longua, a veteran tennis instructor and USPTA pro, has produced a concise guide to learning the fundamentals of the game.
The two top American tennis players of the 70s and 80s, Jimmy Connors and John McEnroe, were Irish-American lefties who were cheaters. Brad Gilbert doesn't say this in his classic guide to the mental side of winning tennis matches, but it isn't a far-fetched inference from some of the war stories he tells.
It is impossible not to compare Matthew Cronin's Epic: John McEnroe, Bjorn Borg and the Greatest Tennis Season Ever with Stephen Tignor's High Strung: Bjorn Borg, John McEnroe and the Untold Story of Tennis' Fiercest Rivalry.
You don't have to be a New Yorker, or a New Yorker who plays tennis to savor the pleasure of Tennis in New York by Dale G. Caldwell and Nancy Gill McShea, a delightful addition to any library, or even as a surprise gift for that doubles partner or singles rival who has everything.
For tennis fans too young to remember the glory days of the 1970s and the early 1980s, High Strung: Bjorn Borg, John McEnroe and the Untold Story of Tennis' Fiercest Rivalry is a thoroughly researched guide to an era when the game was on the front pages of the world's sports consciousness in a way it hasn't been since those days.
Rafa, an autobiography of former number one player Rafael Nadal, was published last summer, but considering that its subject has just scored another career triumph, playing on Spain's winning Davis Cup team late last year, this is a good time to revisit Nadal's story.
Players will want to read this book for its many interesting anecdotes and because it may arm them to win drinks at tennis gatherings by betting on either of the following obscure tennis history questions: Who was the youngest Wimbledon winner for over 50 years until Boris Becker's first title in 1985? And, who is the only tennis player in history to win Wimbledon by default?
I think many of us in the tennis world, understandably, take the Williams Sisters and their accomplishments for granted. But just because they have been mainstays on the women’s tour for more than 10 years, it is instructive to take another look because Venus and Serena are quite a story.
Right before the Grateful Dead played “Johnny B. Goode,” guitarist Jerry Garcia used to announce, “This is the one that started it all off.” For tennis memoirs, the same can be said about A Handful of Summers by former South African tennis pro Gordon Forbes. A Handful of Summers is a coming of age story set against the cosmopolitan background of the pro tour in the 1950s while it was still segregated between amateurs and pros.
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