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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-25-2009, 02:32 PM Thread Starter
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WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES

On turning pro, that year's top amateur signing would take on the reigning pro champion in a series of one night stands that was known as the World Championship Series. Sometimes over 100 matches were played. The winner of the series stood to gain a greater percentage of the gate money and would challenge the next top amateur signing the following year. After losing the 1949-50 series to Jack Kramer, the young Pancho Gonzales had to wait until 1953 (when Kramer retired from the series undefeated) before he had a chance to play in the series again. From 1958 the series was played on a round robin basis. In the early 1960s the World Championship Series was done away with, as the organisers preferred to only hold tournaments instead. These are the results of the World Championship Series.

1931 William Tilden d. Karel Kozeluh 63-13
1932 William Tilden d. Hans Nusslein
1934 H. Ellsworth Vines d. William Tilden 47-26
1935 H. Ellsworth Vines d. Lester Stoefen
1936 H. Ellsworth Vines d. Lester Stoefen, Berkeley Bell and George Lott
1937 H. Ellsworth Vines d. Fred Perry 32-29
1938 H. Ellsworth Vines d. Fred Perry 49-35
1939 J. Donald Budge d. H. Ellsworth Vines 21-18 and Fred Perry 18-11
1941 J. Donald Budge d. William Tilden 51-7
1942 J. Donald Budge d. Bobby Riggs, Frank Kovacs, Fred Perry and Lester Stoefen
1946 Bobby Riggs d. J. Donald Budge 23-21
1947-48 Jack Kramer d. Bobby Riggs 69-20
1949-50 Jack Kramer d. Richard 'Pancho' Gonzales 96-27
1950-51 Jack Kramer d. Francisco 'Pancho' Segura 64-28
1952-53 Jack Kramer d. Frank Sedgman 54-41
1953-54 Richard 'Pancho' Gonzales d. Frank Sedgman 30-21 and Francisco 'Pancho' Segura 30-21
1955-56 Richard 'Pancho' Gonzales d. Tony Trabert 74-27
1956-57 Richard 'Pancho' Gonzales d. Ken Rosewall 50-26
1957-58 Richard 'Pancho' Gonzales d. Lew Hoad 51-36
1958-59 Richard 'Pancho' Gonzales (with a 47-15 record) d. Lew Hoad, Mal Anderson and Ashley Cooper, despite a losing 13-15 record against Hoad.
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-27-2009, 02:26 AM
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Re: World Championship Series - Pros

Notice how Gonzales did against Kramer his first year on the tour, 1949-50. Pancho always gets so much praise in how he defeated new pros on the tour. It was a totally different game and competition then the regular tour. He did worse than several others on their first tour against him.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-27-2009, 01:43 PM
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Re: World Championship Series - Pros

He also played much more than the others.

I think I've read that in the last part of their tour with Kramer he won 15 out of their 32 matches, which means he won more in this last part than in the first parts and almost half of these matches. This shows he really got to another level. So perhaps he could have been the better of Kramer in the following years. We'll never know.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-28-2009, 01:39 AM
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Re: World Championship Series - Pros

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Originally Posted by Echoes View Post
He also played much more than the others.

I think I've read that in the last part of their tour with Kramer he won 15 out of their 32 matches, which means he won more in this last part than in the first parts and almost half of these matches. This shows he really got to another level. So perhaps he could have been the better of Kramer in the following years. We'll never know.
I agree! Probably the hardest thing for the newcomers was playing on the indoor surfaces, which were very fast. One had to be a very good serve and volleyer and get used to the footing. Rosewall played Gonzales pretty evenly once they got onto grass and clay. I have no doubt that Poncho became as good or better than Kramer the more he played the Pro Tour.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-20-2010, 09:32 AM
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Re: World Championship Series - Pros

It's a quite a history, isn't it?
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