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Charlotte Cooper

Charlotte Cooper

English tennis player
Charlotte Cooper
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro English tennis player
A.K.A. Charlotte Sterry, Charlotte Reinagle Sterry, Charlotte Reinagle Cooper...
Was Athlete Tennis player Field hockey player
From United Kingdom
Type Sports
Gender female
Birth 22 September 1870, Ealing
Death 10 October 1966, Helensburgh (aged 96 years)
Star sign Virgo
Children: Gwen Sterry
The details (from wikipedia)


Charlotte Cooper Sterry (née Charlotte Reinagle Cooper, 22 September 1870 – 10 October 1966) was a female tennis player from England who won five singles titles at the Wimbledon Championships and in 1900 became Olympic champion. In winning in Paris on July 11th 1900, she became the first female Olympic tennis champion as well as the first individual female Olympic champion.

Early life and career

Charlotte Cooper
Charlotte Cooper Sterry vs Blanche Bingley Hillyard at Eastbourne

Charlotte Cooper was born on 22 September 1870 at Waldham Lodge, Ealing, Middlesex, England, the youngest daughter of Henry Cooper, a miller, and his wife Teresa Georgiana Miller. She learned to play tennis at the Ealing Lawn Tennis Club where she was first coached by H. Lawrence and later by Charles Martin and Harold Mahony. She won her first senior singles title in 1893 at Ilkley . Between 1893 and 1917 she participated in 21 Wimbledon tournaments. At her first appearance she reached the semifinals of the singles event in which she lost to Blanche Bingley Hillyard. She won her first singles title in 1895, defeating Helen Jackson in the final of the All-Comers event. In that match she was down 0–5 in both sets but managed to win in straight sets. In 1896, she successfully defended her title in the Challenge Round against Alice Simpson Pickering. Between 1897 and 1901 the titles were divided between Cooper Sterry (1898, 1901) and Bingley Hillyard (1897, 1899, 1900). The 1902 Challenge Round match against Muriel Robb was halted on the first day of play due to rainfall at 6–4, 11–13. The match was replayed in its entirety the next day and Robb won 7–5, 6–1, playing a total of 53 games which was then a record for the longest women's singles final. In 1908 as a mother of two she won her last singles title when she defeated Agnes Morton in straight sets in the All-Comers final after a seven-year hiatus and at the age of 37. She is the oldest Wimbledon's ladies’ singles champion and her record of eight consecutive singles finals stood until 1990 when Martina Navratilova reached her ninth consecutive singles final.

In addition to her singles titles, Cooper Sterry also won seven All-England mixed doubles titles; five times with Harold Mahony (1894–1898) and once with Laurence Doherty (1900) and Xenophon Casdagli (1908). In 1913 she reached the final of the first Wimbledon women's doubles event with Dorothea Douglass, 18 years after winning her first Wimbledon title.

She won the singles title at the Irish Lawn Tennis Championships in 1895 and 1898 , a prestigious tournament at the time . At the 1900 Summer Olympics, where women participated for the first time, Cooper Sterry won the tennis singles event. On 11 July 1900 she defeated Hélène Prévost in the final in straight sets and became the first female Olympic tennis champion as well as the first individual female Olympic champion. With Reginald Doherty, she won the mixed doubles title after a straight-sets victory in the final against Hélène Prévost and Harold Mahony. In 1901 she won the singles title at the German Championships, and in 1902 she won the Swiss Championship. Cooper Sterry remained active in competitive tennis and continued to play in championship events well into her 50s.

On 12 January 1901 she married Alfred Sterry, a solicitor, who became president of the Lawn Tennis Association. They had two children: Rex (born 1903) who was the vice-chairman of the All England Club for a period of 15 years during the 1960s and 1970s and Gwen (born 1905), a tennis player who participated at Wimbledon and played on Britain's Wightman Cup team.

Cooper Sterry, who had been deaf since the age of 26, died on 10 October 1966 at the age of 96, in Helensburgh, Scotland.

She was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2013.

Playing style

Cooper Sterry had an offensive style of playing, attacking the net when the opportunity arose. She was one of a few female players of her time who served overhead. Her main strengths were her steadiness, temperament and tactical ability. Her excellent volleying skills stood out at a time when this was still a rarity in ladies tennis.

Grand Slam finals

Singles: 11 (5 titles, 6 runners-up)

Result Year Championship Surface Opponent Score
Win 1895 Wimbledon (1) Grass Charlotte Cooper Helen Jackson Atkins 7–5, 8–6
Win 1896 Wimbledon (2) Grass Charlotte Cooper Alice Simpson Pickering 6–2, 6–3
Loss 1897 Wimbledon Grass Charlotte Cooper Blanche Bingley Hillyard 7–5, 5–7, 2–6
Win 1898 Wimbledon (3) Grass Charlotte Cooper Louisa Martin 6–4, 6–4
Loss 1899 Wimbledon Grass Charlotte Cooper Blanche Bingley Hillyard 2–6, 3–6
Loss 1900 Wimbledon Grass Charlotte Cooper Blanche Bingley Hillyard 6–4, 4–6, 4–6
Win 1901 Wimbledon (4) Grass Charlotte Cooper Blanche Bingley Hillyard 6–2, 6–2
Loss 1902 Wimbledon Grass Charlotte Cooper Muriel Robb 5–7, 1–6
Loss 1904 Wimbledon Grass Charlotte Cooper Dorothea Lambert Chambers 0–6, 3–6
Win 1908 Wimbledon (5) Grass Charlotte Cooper Agnes Morton 6–4, 6–4
Loss 1912 Wimbledon Grass Charlotte Cooper Ethel Thomson Larcombe 3–6, 1–6

Doubles: 1 (1 runner-up)

Result Year Championship Surface Partner Opponents Score
Loss 1913 Wimbledon Grass Charlotte Cooper Dorothea Douglass Charlotte Cooper Winifred McNair
Charlotte Cooper Dora Boothby
4–6, 2–4 ret.
The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article on 25 Jul 2019. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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