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Australian Tennis Hall of Fame Inducts Turnbull

Wendy 'Rabbit' Turnbull is the latest Australian great to be admitted to the country's Tennis Hall of Fame.

Published January 26, 2009 12:00

Australian Tennis Hall of Fame Inducts Turnbull
Wendy Turnbull

MELBOURNE, Australia - Former world No.3 Wendy Turnbull was inducted into the Australian Tennis Hall of Fame on Monday. She was formally inducted during an Australia Day ceremony, when a bronze statue was unveiled by Tennis Australia President Geoff Pollard, to be installed in Garden Square at Melbourne Park alongside other greats of Australian tennis.

Turnbull turned pro in 1975 and was quickly nicknamed "Rabbit" by her peers, such was her foot speed around the court. In an illustrious career she made the final of every Grand Slam except Wimbledon. She was runner-up to Chris Evert at the 1977 US Open and 1979 French Open, as well as to Hana Mandlikova at the 1980 Australian Open. Her best effort at Wimbledon was the quarterfinals in 1979, 1980 and 1981. Turnbull's consistency on the Tour was exceptional, achieving a Top 10 year-end world ranking for eight consecutive years (from 1977 to 1984) and a year-end Top 20 ranking for 10 straight years (from 1977 to 1986). She achieved her highest singles ranking in 1985.

In doubles she paired with Kerrie Reid to win 1978 Wimbledon, with Betty Stove to win the 1979 US Open and 1979 French Open, and with Rosemary Casals to win the 1982 US Open. She also made another 11 major doubles finals, won five mixed titles and teamed with Liz Smylie to win the bronze at the 1988 Olympics.

Overall, Turnbull won 13 singles titles (478-250 career record) and 55 doubles titles (653-225 career record), earning more than $2.7 million in career prize money before retiring in 1989. Her record representing her country in Fed Cup for 12 years from 1977 was an impressive 46-16 (17-8 singles, 29-8 doubles) and she was captain or coach of the team from 1985 to 1993.

Other Australian Hall of Fame inductees include Rod Laver, Margaret Smith, Evonne Goolagong, Ken Rosewall, Fred Stolle, Jack Crawford, Pat Cash, Mark Edmonson and Patrick Rafter.

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