Bud Collins, tennis historian, journalist and personality and the man who literally wrote the history book on tennis – namely the newly-released book “The Bud Collins History of Tennis: An Authoritative Encyclopedia and Record Book,” not surprisingly called Sunday’s epic Wimbledon men’s singles final between Rafael Nadal of Spain and Roger Federer of Switzerland the best Wimbledon final in history.
“This was the heavyweight championship in the world of tennis – a singular match in Wimbledon’s history,” said Collins. “I have covered 41 finals, including the classics of 1980 and 1981 with (Bjorn) Borg and (John) McEnroe, but this 4 hour, 48 minute final is No. 1.”
In the longest Wimbledon men’s singles final ever played, Nadal ended the five-year title reign of Federer, defeating the world’s No. 1 player 6-4, 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-7 (8), 9-7, avenging his losses to Federer in the 2006 and 2007 Wimbledon finals. Nadal is the first Spaniard to win the Wimbledon men’s singles title since Manuel Santana in 1966. Federer is denied his opportunity to win a sixth straight Wimbledon singles title, an unprecedented feat in the modern era of tennis. Nadal, who has won the last four French Open titles, becomes the first man since Bjorn Borg in 1980 to win the French Open and Wimbledon back-to-back in the same year.
“They fought so ferociously,” said Collins of Nadal and Federer. “I thought Nadal would crumble a little after losing the two match points, but it did not faze him and he became the first player to win the Cross Channel double, the French followed by Wimbledon, a feat thought impossible since the last time it was done in 1980 by Borg.”
“The Bud Collins History of Tennis” ($35.95, New Chapter Press, 784 pages) is the ultimate compilation of historical tennis information, including year-by-year recaps of every tennis season, biographical sketches of every major tennis personality, as well as stats, records, and championship rolls for all the major events. The author’s personal relationships with major tennis stars offer insights into the world of professional tennis found nowhere else. More information on the book can be found at www.newchapterpressmedia.com
“Roger’s backhand, saving one of the match points, was glorious,” said Collins. “He fought well to come back. How ironic that the last point ended with Federer’s forehand failing him, probably the greatest forehand ever.”
Among those endorsing “The Bud Collins History of Tennis” include the two women who hold the Wimbledon record for most total titles – Martina Navratilova and Billie Jean King – who both won 20 Wimbledon titles in their careers. Said Navratilova, “If you know nothing about tennis, this book is for you. And if you know everything about tennis-Hah!-Bud knows more, so this book is for you too!” Said King, “We can’t move forward if we don’t understand and appreciate our past. This book not only provides us with accurate reporting of the rich tennis history, it keeps us current on the progress of the sport today.” Also endorsing the book is author, commentator and Sports Illustrated contributor Frank Deford, who stated, “No tennis encyclopedia could be written by anyone but Bud Collins because Bud Collins is the walking tennis encyclopedia-the game’s barefoot professor. The only thing missing about the sport from his new edition is a section about Bud himself. But everything else is there-and it’s easy to open and use for the whole family.” Said Dick Enberg of CBS Sports and ESPN, “Did you ever see an encyclopedia walking? That’s Bud Collins (who sometimes runs, too). Plunge into his book and swim joyfully through the history of tennis. It’s all here.”
New Chapter Press is also the publisher of “The Roger Federer Story, Quest for Perfection” by Rene Stauffer and “Boycott: Stolen Dreams of the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games” by Tom Caraccioli and Jerry Caraccioli. Founded in 1987, New Chapter Press is an independent publisher of books and part of the Independent Publishers Group.