Tennis Hall of Famer, former Cincinnati Bearcats standout Tony Trabert dies at 90

Tennis Hall of Famer, former Cincinnati Bearcats standout Tony Trabert dies at 90
Tony and Vicki Trabert. (Source: Vicki Trabert (Cincinnati Enquirer))

CINCINNATI (Cincinnati Enquirer) - International Tennis Hall of Famer and former University of Cincinnati two-sport star Tony Trabert has died.

Trabert was 90.

Trabert’s record of 106 match wins and 18 titles in the 1955 season remains one of the greatest single seasons in tennis history, according to our media partners at the Cincinnati Enquirer.

A Cincinnati native and graduate of Walnut Hills High School, Trabert became the first player in history to win three consecutive Ohio singles championships. He was offered several scholarships but ultimately decided to stay at home, enrolling at UC, where he studied political science.

He won the 1951 NCAA singles championship and started at guard for the Bearcats basketball team, which won the Mid-American Conference championship and played in the National Invitation Tournament.

In 1955, Trabert, then 25, produced one of the best seasons in tennis history, compiling a 106-7 match record, including a 38-match winning streak, 18 titles, including 10 straight tournament wins, and three of the four major championships. He lost to Ken Rosewall in the Australian Open semifinals.

Trabert is one of seven men to win three major titles in a single season joining Don Budge (1938), Rod Laver (1962, 1969), Mats Wilander (1988), Roger Federer (2004, 2006, 2007), Rafael Nadal (2010) and Novak Djokovic (2011, 2015).

He was a member of five Davis Cup teams as a player, winning a singles and doubles match to help the United States reclaim the Cup in 1954. He would then serve as team captain from 1976-80, guiding a team that included John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors to a pair of titles.

Following his playing career, Trabert spent more than three decades as a tennis and golf commentator for CBS.

Trabert was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1970 and would later spend 12 years as the hall of fame’s president.

Trabert is survived by his wife of more than 30 years, Vicki, 14 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

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