Royal Albert Hall, London
Wednesday 2 December – Sunday 6 December 2015

Pat Rafter

DoB: 29 December 1972
Plays: Right-handed
Singles titles: 11
Doubles titles: 10
Highest ATP rating: Singles 1
Career prize money: US$ 11,127,058

Player details

As well as being a two time Grand Slam Champion and World Number One, Pat Rafter is remembered for being one of the most popular and well-loved men ever to play the game. One of the last truly great serve and volley exponents, Pat’s brilliance at the net took him to two US Open titles, two Wimbledon finals and the semi-finals of the French Open.

His breakthrough year on Tour came in 1997, beginning at the French Open, where he reached the semi-finals, falling in four sets to Sergi Bruguera. Later that year, he won his first Major title at the US Open, defeating Greg Rusedski in a four-set final. The following year was arguably even better. He won two ATP Masters Series titles in a row – Toronto and Cincinnati. Entering the US Open as the defending champion, he triumphed again, this time in four sets over fellow Australian Mark Philippoussis. Rafter reached the World Number One men’s singles ranking for just one week in 1999, making him the shortest-reigning Number One in ATP Tour history. However, reaching the top spot was no mean feat – the two players holding the coveted position on either side of him were none other than Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi.

His serve and volley style should have seen him have his greatest successes on the grass at Wimbledon. In 2000, he reached the men’s final having defeated Andre Agassi in a classic semi final. In the final however, Rafter was kept from the title by Sampras, who won a record seventh title that year. In 2001, Rafter reached the Wimbledon final again after facing Agassi in the semis for the third successive year, The 2001 final is perhaps one of the most remembered matches but unfortunately for Pat fate seemed to be on the other side of the net. Tournament wildcard, Goran Ivanisevic eventually triumphed in a final that lasted almost four hours. It was one of tennis’ great moments, but heart-breaking for the Australian, who would never win Wimbledon.

2001 was to be Pat’s last on the ATP Tour, as persistent shoulder problems and a desire to spend more time with his family forced him into retirement. Pat now lives in Bermuda with his wife Lara and two children Josh and India.

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