Australians Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde won their fifth straight Wimbledon men’s doubles title Sunday, equaling a record set nearly a century ago.
Woodbridge and Woodforde - known as “the Woodies” and seeded No. 1 - beat the Dutch doubles team of Jacco Eltingh and Paul Haarhuis 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (9-7), 5-7, 6-3.
In women’s doubles, American Gigi Fernandez and Natasha Zvereva of Belarus won their fourth Wimbledon title and their 14th Grand Slam as a team. They defeated American Nicole Arendt and Manon Bollegraf of the Netherlands 7-6 (7-4), 6-4.
The five straight titles ties a record set at the turn of the century when Reggie Doherty and Laurie Doherty won five in a row from 1897-1901. They also won three other times for a record eight overall.
The Grand Slam win for Fernandez and Zvereva was their second this year. They won the French Open last month, their first tournament back together after splitting up following last season’s U.S. Open.
Fernandez and Zvereva won three straight Wimbledon doubles titles from 1992-94. Zvereva also won in 1991 when she teamed with Larisa Neiland. Together they have won 38 WTA Tour doubles events. The record for WTA Tour doubles wins is 78 by Pam Shriver and Martina Navratilova.
Hingis also No. 1 in personality
She’s got the personality and the play. And for Martina Hingis, it was an unbeatable combination at Wimbledon.
“She’s just a very nice person who enjoys her success,” said Jana Novotna, who lost to the 16-year-old in Saturday’s final. “Even at her young age, she is very respectful of the other players, and that’s very good to see.”
Hingis rallied past Novotna 2-6, 6-3, 6-3 to become the youngest Wimbledon champion this century. Novotna was a runner-up for the second time, but the experience was altogether more pleasant than in 1993, and not just because she blew a third-set lead that year to Steffi Graf.
“When I was playing Steffi Graf, she’s always very serious, and everything was really rushed, and you don’t even look at each other, and you don’t talk to each other.
“With Martina it was completely different. I mean, we were lying in the trainer’s room getting stretched and warmed up before the match, and we had a very pleasant conversation.”
Boyfriend of the bride
Pete Sampras’ new girlfriend, American actress Kimberly Williams, is now a fixture in the Wimbledon gossip reports.
The Sunday Mirror ran a photo of her in her role in “Father of the Bride.” Next to the photo was the headline “Sorry Kim, but Pistol Pete’s wed to tennis!”
Williams was spotted in the crowd throughout the fortnight and was the first fan the BBC camera panned after Sampras easily won the final in three straight sets over France’s Cedric Pioline.
MEMO: This sidebar appeared with the story: WIMBLEDON WINNERS Men’s singles - Pete Sampras (1), Tampa, Fla. Women’s singles - Martina Hingis (1), Switzerland Men’s doubles - Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde, Australia (1) Women’s doubles - Gigi Fernandez, Aspen, Colo., and Natasha Zvereva, Belarus (1) Mixed doubles - Cyril Suk and Helena Sukova, Czech Republic (4) Men’s 35 doubles - Jeremy Bates, Britain, and Ramesh Krishnan, India Men’s 45 doubles - Jaime Fillol, Chile, and Dick Stockton, Dallas Women’s 35 doubles - Jo Durie, Britain, and Anne Smith, Dallas Boy’s singles - Wesley Whitehouse, South Africa Girl’s singles - Cara Black, Zimbabwe Boy’s doubles - Luis Horna, Peru, and Nicolas Massu, Chile Girl’s doubles - Cara Black, Zimbabwe, and Irina Seljutina, Kazakstan
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