May 24, 2016
Suzanne Lenglen’s 117th Birthday
Back in the day, tennis was a rigid affair. Amateurs couldn’t compete with pros, and participation fees for important matches were astronomical. Then Suzanne Lenglen came along.
Lenglen picked up her first racket in 1910 for health reasons. In less than five years, she became the sport’s youngest champion. She had a staggeringly successful career, and even starred in one of the earliest instructional films. More importantly, she broke down barriers through her passionate play, non-traditional wardrobe, and outspoken stance against the sport’s formalities.
With Lenglen’s influence, tennis gained the attention it deserved, and became a sport not just for some, but for all.