TRABERT ON TENNIS: The View From Center Court by Tony with Gerald Couzens Trabert

TRABERT ON TENNIS: The View From Center Court

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KIRKUS REVIEW

An overly harsh look at the modern professional tennis world, by a former champ. Trabert, who played Wimbledon at 19 and is the last American to win the French Open (1954-55), has opinions as sharp as his groundstrokes. Sports writer Couzens (A Baseball Album, 1980; etc.) seemingly stands aside here and lets the old pro deliver hard verbal overheads on a variety of tennis topics. Among other things, Trabert blames poor instruction, an overemphasis on winning, and a generation of ""spoiled"" young Yankee pros for the recent down cycle in American professional tennis, and he almost laughingly dismisses the majority of men and women tour players as underconditioned (and overpaid) prima donnas, citing only the wondrous Martina Navratilova and Sweden's Stefan Edberg as models of athletic consistency. This nit-picking tone, combined with Trabert's self-glorifying reminiscences of tennis yesteryear, call his objectivity into question. He unfairly criticizes the intelligence of many male players on the tour, and is condescending towards the women, devoting little discussion to their game and generally deriding it when it comes up. Thus, his closing panegyric on the need for a return to sportsmanship and fairness in tennis seems a bit ironic. Often clumsily written, and rarely more than superficial in its analysis, this is one sports book that's clearly out of bounds.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1988
Publisher: Contemporary