Laver cup history

Laver cup history

Laver Cup is one of the youngest tournaments, which is held between two men’s big teams: a team of Europe and a team of other non-European countries. And let Laver cup history is still quite poor, this tournament is rapidly gaining popularity.

Tennis history: how it was

Speaking about the history of the creation of the Laver Cup, for a start it is worth remembering how this sport appeared. There are a lot of different versions regarding who is the creator of such a game as “tennis”. The most common version states that the creator is Walter Clopton Wingfield, a British soldier. It was he who, as many sources say, created entertainment for the guests of his estate, based on already existing games, such as badminton, where a racket-like tool and a ball were used. Wanting to patent the game as his own, Wingfield changed the game a little to make it different from other games. Thus, the shape of the platform (in the form of an hourglass) and the height of the grid were changed. However, these changes did not help him assign the so-called lawn tennis, and as a result, the game in just a couple of years became popular around the world. In English aristocratic society, lawn tennis has become an integral part of outdoor entertainment, usually held on Sunday. Before the games, tables were set up next to the courts, at which those present drank tea and had small talk.

Gradually, tennis became the official sport in which they began to hold tournaments.

For example, Wales held his first tournament in 1885 in Penarth, in which 8 players took part, of which the Englishman Frederick Hooper Aldrich-Blake was the best.

From 1878, the first French lawn tennis clubs were founded in the resort towns of Dinardée (Atlantic coast, north-west France), Le Havre (coast of the Pas-de-Calais, north of France), Cannes (Cote d’Azur, south of France) (1881 ), Biarritz (Atlantic Pyrenees), Nice (Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur, Mediterranean, southeast of France) (1890).

In 1880, the first clay courts appeared. To this innovation, tennis owes the English twin brothers William and Ernest Renshaw, who opened a lawn tennis club in Cannes. But, very quickly, they noticed that due to the local climate, the grass wears out quickly. And then they had an idea, to cover the court with fine crumbs, obtained by grinding the burnt clay pots. It should be noted that the brothers from 1881 for 10 years dominated the courts, as in their homeland, as in European cities.

In Paris, the first tennis club appeared in 1882 “Racing Club de France”, and the following year another – “Stade Francais”. In 1886, 10 clay courts for the l’île de Puteaux club were built on an island on the Seine, in the suburbs of the capital (not far from the Bois de Boulogne).

The port city of Boulogne-sur-Mer (in the north of France) became a pioneer in the organization of tennis competitions, on the clay courts of which from September 9 to September 13, 1888 5 players took part and all from Great Britain. Defeated Edgar John Chippendale.

Since 1890, two Parisian sports clubs “Racing Club de France” and “l’île de Puteaux”, with the largest number of courts and stands for spectators, became the main bases for holding tournaments, including those open to foreigners. In 1900, the Olympic tournament was held on the courts of these clubs.

In the same year, the Union of French Societies in Athletics (USFSA), which at the time was a unified sports federation, incorporated a lawn tennis in its membership and published its rules. However, the nationalist French press launched a sharply critical company against the game of English origin, demanding a ban on lawn tennis in France. And only the intervention of the Minister of Education Jules Ferry, who is also responsible for the development of the sport, made it possible to stop the persecution of lawn tennis in France.

In 1895, the Paris Tennis Club “Tennis Club de Paris” built a hall that can accommodate two wooden courts (made of oak). These were the first indoor tennis courts in France. In 1898, a professional tournament (in a circular system) of 3 participants was held at them, which divided the places in the following order: Englishman who moved to live in France, Thomas Burke, Irishman George Kerr George Kerr and Englishman Tom Fleming. The following professional performances were held in 1900 during the World Paris Exhibition on clay courts. The best was Burk, who defeated Kerr and Englishman Charles Hierons.

In Germany, the first German club “LTC Rot Wei” appeared in 1881 in the famous resort of Baden-Baden, although five years earlier in 1876 an English club was founded in the resort of Bad Homburg by Englishman Robert Anstruther, on the courts of which and the first tournament. In 1892 the first international tournament was held in Badan-Baden.

The first men’s tournament in Berlin was held in 1890, women in this tournament began to speak in 1896, the winner was Clara von der Schulenburg.

In August 1891 the first tournament on clay courts was held in Hamburg. It was attended by 19 Germans and Austrians and one American William Howard, who won it. In 1893, three tournaments took place at once: in May, the Hamburg Spring, and in August, one by one, the German International Championships and the traditional one – Hamburg.

Since 1877, British players began to come to Austria and give demonstrations, which contributed to the popularization of this sport in the country. Tournaments began to be held in 1884 on the initiative of the same British. The official Austrian International Championship in 1894 (28-30.09) gathered 7 participants. The victory was celebrated by the Briton and the interesting surname Gandon (H.W. Gandon), who lived in Austria (author’s comment – The Austrian Association of Lawn Tennis was created in 1903).

Since 1899, the UK Lawn Tennis Association has begun to hold the European Championships for men. The first championship took place on clay courts in Bad Homburg (Germany). 43 players participated, and 4 from the USA.

Before the beginning of the new century, another significant event occurred in the history of tennis, which gave rise to the holding of the unofficial world championship for the national men’s teams – the Davis Cup. In 1899, Dwight Davis, a wealthy American and member of the Harvard University (Massachusetts, USA) tennis team, invited English tennis friends to visit during the holidays and invited them to play a match with the Boston national team.

The first official match meeting took place on August 8, 1900 in Boston on the courts of the Longwood Cricket Club in the presence of 120 spectators.

Laver cup history: yesterday, today, tomorrow

To date, there are already a huge number of different competitions and tennis tournaments, but even this is not the limit. The best athletes of the whole world are always ready to conquer new heights, therefore, they are enthusiastically welcomed by new tournaments, such as the Laver cup.

Laver cup history dates back to 2017. This tournament is named after the legendary Australian tennis player Rod Laver, who is recognized by many as one of the greatest players in the history of sports. Roger Federer himself took part in organizing the tournament.

The tournament involves two teams: “Europe” and “World” (except the players did not fall into the team of “Europe”). Each team consists of 6 tennis players, four of which qualify according to the ATP rating, and two – to be chosen by the captains of the teams (non-captain).

The tournament is held for 3 days, 14 days after the “US Open”. Every day, there are three matches in singles and one in doubles (two singles in the daytime session, one single and one double in the evening). According to the results of 12 matches the winner is determined. In the case of a tie, the decisive match is played. For each victory on the first day, the team gets one point, on the second – two, in the third – three.

The day before each game day commanders teams submit a list of participants, showing the number of singles matches and one of the couples who have not played. The list is not necessarily the player with a higher rating was number 1. The captain knows what the composition will be displayed on the day of the game the opposing team. In the case of the decisive 13th match, the team captains form pairs in any composition immediately before the match.

No points for participation, but there are significant royalties. This important cup favorably differ from the Davis Cup, which, being the official tournament ITF, does not give rating points or money.

On August 24, 2015, a presentation of the first tournament took place in New York. It Rod Laver announced the first captains and their assistants (vice-captain): in team Europe – Bjorn Borg and Thomas Enqvist; in “World” team – John McVey and his younger brother Patrick. On June 29, 2017, the Cannizaro House Wimbledon Hotel in London hosted the presentation of the trophy of the tournament.