Olympic And Paralympic Medallists Share Memories In ITF Olympic Book

Olympic Book: My Life, My Medal (photo: ITF)

LONDON, July 6, 2016

The International Tennis Federation (ITF) today announced the publication of its official Olympic Book for Rio 2016: My Life, My Medal. One hundred and eighteen Olympic and Paralympic tennis medallists took part in the project to help promote the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Tennis Events.

To view My Life, My Medal, please click here

Tennis returned as a full-medal sport at the Olympic Games at Seoul 1988, with the first Paralympic Tennis Event held at Barcelona 1992. The 224-page publication takes a look at the medallists from Seoul through London 2012, who share their stories of how the Olympics and Paralympics affected their lives. The book also shows the Olympians as they are today with original photography by 36 international photographers.

The book opens with all-time great Stefanie Graf, of Germany, who won singles gold at Seoul 1988 to crown a memorable year that saw her achieve the Grand Slam. She is joined by some of the game’s biggest stars of the last 30 years, including Andre Agassi (USA), Boris Becker (GER), Lindsay Davenport (USA), Novak Djokovic (SRB), Roger Federer (SUI), Justine Henin (BEL), Andy Murray (GBR), Rafael Nadal (ESP), Arantxa Sanchez Vicario (ESP), Monica Seles (USA), and Serena and Venus Williams (USA). Four-time singles gold medallist Esther Vergeer (NED), Shingo Kunieda (JPN), Peter Norfolk (GBR) and founder of wheelchair tennis Brad Parks (USA) are among the featured Paralympians.

ITF President David Haggerty said: “My Life, My Medal was inspired by American Tim Mayotte, who won a silver medal in Seoul, and who lists ‘Olympic medallist’ as his top achievement on his Twitter page 28 years later. This made us want to know how other tennis Olympians and Paralympians viewed their achievement. This book allows you to read in their own words how important the Olympics have been, and continue to be, in their lives.”

Haggerty added: “Tennis’s return to the Olympics was an important milestone in the history of our sport. The Olympic effect has seen the number of ITF member nations increase from 147 in 1988 to a record 211 nations today. This has increased the number of nations competing at the highest level by about 40 percent.” 

My Life, My Medal follows in the footsteps of the highly successful ITF publications, Aspire, Inspire and Journey to Beijing, that were produced for the last two Olympic Tennis Events.

The 2016 Olympic Tennis Event will be held at the Olympic Tennis Centre in Barra Olympic Park on 6-14 August, while the 2016 Paralympic Tennis Event will be held at the same venue on 9-16 September.

Featured Medallists (P = Paralympians) 

Argentina: Juan Martin del Potro, Javier Frana, Christian Miniussi, Gabriela Sabatini, Paola Suarez, Patricia Tarabini 

Australia: Nicole Bradtke, Daniela Di Toro (P), David Hall (P), Rachel McQuillan, Alicia Molik, Branka Pupovac (P), Elizabeth Smylie, Wendy Turnbull, Todd Woodbridge, Mark Woodforde

Belarus: Victoria Azarenka, Max Mirnyi, Natalia Zvereva

Belgium: Els Callens, Justine Henin, Dominique Monami

Bulgaria: Manuela Maleeva

Canada: Sebastien Lareau, Daniel Nestor

Chile: Fernando Gonzalez, Nicolas Massu

China, PR: Li Ting, Sun Tian-Tian, Yan Zi, Zheng Jie

Croatia: Mario Ancic, Goran Ivanisevic, Ivan Ljubicic, Goran Prpic

Czech Republic: Andrea Hlavackova, Lucie Hradecka, Helena Sukova

France: Julien Benneteau, Arnaud di Pasquale, Richard Gasquet, Stephane Houdet (P), Michael Jeremiasz (P), Michael Llodra, Amelie Mauresmo, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga

Georgia: Leila Meskhi

Germany: Boris Becker, Marc-Kevin Goellner, Stefanie Graf, Tommy Haas, Nicolas Kiefer, Claudia Kohde-Kilsch, David Prinosil, Rainer Schuettler, Michael Stich

Great Britain: Neil Broad, Tim Henman, Andy Murray, Laura Robson, Peter Norfolk (P)

India: Leander Paes

Israel: Noam Gershony (P)

Japan: Shingo Kunieda (P)

Netherlands: Kristie Boogert, Monique Kalkman (P), Miriam Oremans, Maaike Smit (P), Chantal Vandierendonck (P), Esther Vergeer (P)

Russia: Andrei Cherkasov, Elena Dementieva, Yevgeny Kafelnikov, Maria Kirilenko, Nadia Petrova, Dinara Safina, Vera Zvonareva

Serbia: Novak Djokovic

Slovakia: Miloslav Mecir

South Africa: Wayne Ferreira, Piet Norval

Spain: Jordi Arrese, Sergi Bruguera, Sergio Casal, Alex Corretja, Albert Costa, Anabel Medina Garrigues, Conchita Martinez, Rafael Nadal, Virginia Ruano Pascual, Emilio Sanchez, Arantxa Sanchez Vicario

Sweden: Simon Aspelin, Stefan Edberg, Anders Jarryd, Thomas Johansson

Switzerland: Roger Federer, Marc Rosset, Stan Wawrinka

USA: Andre Agassi, Bob Bryan, Mike Bryan, Lindsay Davenport, Gigi Fernandez, Mary Joe Fernandez, Ken Flach, Zina Garrison, Brad Gilbert, Tim Mayotte, Brad Parks (P), Lisa Raymond, Robert Seguso, Monica Seles, Pam Shriver, Nick Taylor (P), David Wagner (P), Serena Williams, Venus Williams