Tim Joyce of RealClearSports goes strolling down the memory lane of the 1970s tennis world here and here, bringing back a lot of memories for this one-time diehard who doesn’t find the game quite that compelling any more.
Perhaps it was because of those times — for me most notably involving one Billie Jean King — and less about the American primacy Joyce mentions. These were my formative years as a young athlete, a young woman and an aspiring journalist, and my love for tennis helped shape my experiences relating to all three as much as any sport.
Those early years of the open era seemed so dynamic, so vibrant, before the full onset of big money, global grind and early burnout of top pros that are common today. The Federer-Nadal matches are to be savored, as are those when the Williams sisters are facing one another.
Joyce’s concern is that today’s young generation of fans may not relish those memories in quite the same way people like me recall Borg-McEnroe and Evert-Navratilova.
I’m hoping that they will.