G is for Zina Garrison

Zina Garrison claimed her third Grand Slam mixed doubles title at Wimbledon in 1990, partnering with Rick Leach.

From the Wikipedia:

Zina Lynna Garrison (born November 16, 1963, in Houston, Texas) is a former professional tennis player from the United States. During her career, she was a women’s singles runner-up at Wimbledon in 1990, a three-time Grand Slam mixed doubles champion, and a women’s doubles gold medalist at the 1988 Olympic Games.

She finished 1989 ranked a career-high World No. 4 in singles.

ZINA was a ZESTFUL person, who, when she was in the ZONE, could be a formidable player.

She lost to Martina Navratilova 21 straight times before beating her in the 1988 US Open, advancing to the semifinals where she lost to Gabriella Sabatini. You can see a clip of her talking about the victory HERE.

The highlight of Garrison’s career came in 1990 at Wimbledon. She defeated French Open champion Monica Seles in the quarterfinals 3–6, 6–3, 9–7 and the defending Wimbledon champion and World No. 1 Steffi Graf in the semifinals 6–3, 3–6, 6–4 to reach her first (and only) Grand Slam singles final, becoming the first African-American woman to do so since Althea Gibson. There, she lost to Navrátilová 6–4, 6–1 who won her record ninth women’s singles title at Wimbledon. However, Garrison claimed her third Grand Slam mixed doubles title at Wimbledon that year (partnering with Rick Leach).

The reason I thought about her is a news piece about how Zina is now coaching 18-year-old Taylor Townsend. They may be well-suited to work together, because both dealt with eating issues. Zina suffered from bulimia after her mother died. Before Zina trained her, Taylor was asked by the tennis authorities “to sit out of the 2012 U.S. Open Junior tournament due to her [excessive] weight.”


ABC Wednesday, Round 15

Author: Roger

I'm a librarian. I hear music, even when it's not being played. I used to work at a comic book store, and it still informs my life. I won once on JEOPARDY! - ditto.

16 thoughts on “G is for Zina Garrison”

  1. I wished I could play tennis, but I am not in for any sport.
    Thanks for your visit and comment. I hope ABC on Wednesday has a great week with many entries.
    Wil, ABCW Team.

  2. I had an acquaintance named Zareena Garrison so I did a double take at the title of your post. that’s neither here or there though…just a comment.

    I do hope Zina can be a strong influence on Taylor.

  3. Sounds like Zina will be the perfect coach, and a good example of how coaching goes so much deeper than just learning the basics of a sport.

  4. I love tennis. I always watch Wimbledon on TV — but missed the US Open this year — on vacation. See my blog for my reply to your comment on my blog:)

  5. She beat famous names in the game. I have a racket but never play; no sporty bone in the body at all.

  6. I am not a Tennis fan and therefore only know the once who had been in newspapers for other things then Tennis ! lol !

  7. I’m not a tennis fan, except when my friends invite me for dinner in the summer time and I have to pick a side from whoever is playing the Wimbledon. But this is a Inspiring lady! I like that she didn’t give up and after 21 defeats she finally defeated Martina.

  8. I don’t follow tennis so this is an informative post for me, and inspiring – never give up! I love that Zina is now coaching, as she obviously loves the sport of tennis and has a wealth of experience to pass on to younger players like Taylor.

  9. She’s beautiful. Her name sounded familiar but until I began reading your post, I thought she was a writer. Excessive weight, huh? It looks like a lot of muscle to me. But, then I suppose the Wikipedia photo is an after photo.

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