The Gentleman's Championship - Wimbledon

by Cindi SutterFounder of The Spirited Table®

Pat Cash won the Gentleman's Singles match at Wimbledon in 1987 and I was seated at Centre Court to share that fabulous experience; bad 80's hair and all. But the Champion who got our tickets and invited us to his box for a visit, was Arthur Ashe. But I got ahead of on and hopefully enjoy some photos that don't have that "digitally perfect" look. 

Arthur Ashe was the professional tennis player who represented Head Racquet Sports in so many ways, I can't begin to list them. He will forever be remembered as the consummate professional.

My most profound memory of Arthur is from ISPO, the International Sports Products Organization trade show. It's the end of a very long day of covering literally acres of booths, products and adoring fans and what does Arthur Ashe do next? He hits hundreds of tennis balls across the net to the kids who've been waiting to meet him. Did he have to do that? Absolutely not. Time has blurred how long I sat and watched him light up the faces of his youthful fans, but it was long enough that most of the spectators had come and gone multiple times.  

In my mind, that's the best part of his legacy. A Gentleman, a Champion Tennis player, a Father, a husband and as the Head Racquet team referred to him, a sponsor's dream. A man who succumbed to Aids contracted from a blood transfusion, who left us way too young. 

Enjoy today's Gentleman's Championship and remember the Champions who paved the way.