Gigi Fernández

Gigi Fernández

Gigi Fernández
Country (sports)  United States
Residence Connecticut, USA
Born (1964-02-22) February 22, 1964
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Height 1.70 m (5 ft 7 in)
Turned pro November 1983
Retired November 1997
Plays Right-handed (two handed-backhand)
Prize money US$ 4,681,906
Int. Tennis HoF 2010 (member page)
Singles
Career record 270–232
Career titles 2
Highest ranking No. 17 (October 6, 1991)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open 4R (1990, 1993)
French Open 2R (1986, 1987, 1991)
Wimbledon SF (1994)
US Open QF (1991, 1994)
Doubles
Career record 664–184
Career titles 69
Highest ranking No. 1 (March 4, 1991)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open W (1993, 1994)
French Open W (1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1997)
Wimbledon W (1992, 1993, 1994, 1997)
US Open W (1988, 1990, 1992, 1995, 1996)
Other doubles tournaments
Tour Finals W (1993, 1994)
Olympic Games Gold Medal (1992, 1996)
Mixed doubles
Grand Slam Mixed Doubles results
Australian Open F (1995)
French Open
Wimbledon F (1995)
US Open F (1995)
Last updated on: September 10, 2013.

Beatriz "Gigi" Fernández (born February 22, 1964, in San Juan, Puerto Rico) is a former professional tennis player, the first female athlete from her native Puerto Rico to turn professional,[1] the first Puerto Rican woman to ever win an Olympic gold medal and the first to be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame.[2]

Fernández won 17 Grand Slam doubles titles and two Olympic gold medals representing the United States, and reached the World No. 1 ranking in women's doubles. She reached a career high singles ranking of 17 in 1991. Since retiring from the professional tour in 1997 at the age of 33,[3] Fernández has been a tennis coach and entrepreneuse.

Contents

  • Career 1
  • Personal life 2
  • Major finals 3
    • Grand Slam finals 3.1
      • Women's doubles: 23 (17–6) 3.1.1
      • Mixed doubles: 3 (0–3) 3.1.2
    • Olympic finals 3.2
      • Doubles: 2 (2 gold medals) 3.2.1
  • WTA Tour titles (71) 4
    • Singles (2) 4.1
    • Doubles (69) 4.2
  • Women's doubles performance timeline 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8

Career

Fernández was recognized primarily as a doubles specialist during her professional career. She won a career doubles Grand Slam with 17 Grand Slam women's doubles title – six French Open, five US Open, four Wimbledon, and two Australian Open winning at least one Grand Slam title every year from 1988–1997, except 1989, and for three straight years winning three of the four Grand Slam doubles titles in the same year (1992–1994). She won 14 of her 17 Grand Slam titles partnering Natasha Zvereva; their partnership is the second most successful doubles pair in Grand Slam history after Martina Navratilova and Pam Shriver in the Open era.[4]

In mixed doubles, Fernández was the runner-up in three of the four Grand Slam mixed doubles events in 1995 (Australian Open, Wimbledon, and US Open) partnering Cyril Suk. Fernández captured 68 career titles in women's doubles and reached the World No. 1 doubles ranking in 1991 and attained the No. 1 ranking again in 1993, 1994 and 1995.[5] She won a total of 69 doubles titles during her career.

Fernández represented the United States at the Olympic Games in 1992 (Barcelona) and 1996 (Atlanta). She teamed with Mary Joe Fernández (no relation) to win the women's doubles gold medal on both occasions. The first gold medal was won against the home team of Conchita Martínez and Arantxa Sánchez Vicario with the King and Queen of Spain in the audience. The two medals are front and center on Fernández's desk, along with a car license plate that reads "DBL GLD".[6]

Fernández represented Puerto Rico when San Juan played host to the Pan Am Games in 1979. Just 15, Fernández won a bronze medal. In 1982 at the Central American-Caribbean Games in Cuba, she teamed up with Marilda Juliá to win doubles gold and won a silver medal in the singles as well. She represented Puerto Rico at the 1984 Olympics.

Fernández was also on the United States team that won the Fed Cup in 1990.

In singles, Fernández reached as high as World No. 17. She also won two top-level titles and reached the semifinals at Wimbledon in 1994 (ranked 99 becoming the lowest-ranked grand Slam singles semi-finalist at Wimbledon[7]) and the quarterfinals at the US Open in 1991 and 1994.

Fernández retired from the professional tour in 1997. By far the most successful tennis player in the history of Puerto Rico, Fernández was named Puerto Rico's "Female Athlete of the Century" in 1999.[6]

On July 12, 2010, Fernández was inducted in the International Tennis Hall of Fame alongside Zvereva.[5]

Personal life

Fernández was born in San Juan. Her father Tuto was a well-known doctor in Puerto Rico.[8] Her cousin José Ferrer was a famous Puerto Rican actor and director.[8] Fernández started playing tennis when she was seven. When she turned professional in 1983, she became Puerto Rico's first-ever female professional athlete. Prior to turning professional, she played tennis for one season at Clemson University, in 1982–83, where she was a singles and doubles All-American and reached the National Collegiate Athletics Association singles final.

Since retiring from the tour, Fernández has worked as a tennis coach. She has coached players including the former World No. 1 doubles player Rennae Stubbs, Lisa Raymond, and Samantha Stosur. She has also coached for the Puerto Rican national team and the University of South Florida. Fernández also remains active in corporate hospitality events and participates in fundraisers throughout the country.

Fernández earned a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of South Florida in 2003. She later graduated from Rollins College's Crummer School of Business where she earned a Master of Business Administration. She is the mother of twins, Karson Xavier and Madison Jane, and the partner of retired professional golfer and current WWE executive Jane Geddes.[9]

In 2010, Fernández started a company called Baby Goes Pro.[10] She presently resides in Connecticut, and is the Director of Tennis at Chelsea Piers Connecticut, also in Stamford.[11]

Major finals

Grand Slam finals

Women's doubles: 23 (17–6)

Outcome Year Championship Partner Opponents Score
Winner 1988 US Open (1) Robin White Patty Fendick
Jill Hetherington
6–4, 6–1
Winner 1990 US Open (2) Martina Navratilova Jana Novotná
Helena Suková
6–2, 6–4
Runner-up 1991 Australian Open (1) Jana Novotná Patty Fendick
Mary Joe Fernández
7–6(7–4), 6–1
Winner 1991 French Open (1) Jana Novotná Larisa Savchenko Neiland
Natasha Zvereva
6–4, 6–0
Runner-up 1991 Wimbledon (1) Jana Novotná Larisa Savchenko Neiland
Natasha Zvereva
6–4, 3–6, 6–4
Winner 1992 French Open (2) Natasha Zvereva Conchita Martínez
Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
6–3, 6–2
Winner 1992 Wimbledon (1) Natasha Zvereva Larisa Savchenko Neiland
Jana Novotná
6–4, 6–1
Winner 1992 US Open (3) Natasha Zvereva Larisa Savchenko Neiland
Jana Novotná
7–6(7–4), 6–1
Winner 1993 Australian Open (1) Natasha Zvereva Pam Shriver
Elizabeth Smylie
6–4, 6–3
Winner 1993 French Open (3) Natasha Zvereva Jana Novotná
Larisa Savchenko Neiland
6–3, 7–5
Winner 1993 Wimbledon (2) Natasha Zvereva Larisa Savchenko Neiland
Jana Novotná
6–4, 6–7(9–11), 6–4
Winner 1994 Australian Open (2) Natasha Zvereva Patty Fendick
Meredith McGrath
6–3, 4–6, 6–4
Winner 1994 French Open (4) Natasha Zvereva Lindsay Davenport
Lisa Raymond
6–2, 6–2
Winner 1994 Wimbledon (3) Natasha Zvereva Jana Novotná
Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
6–4, 6–1
Runner-up 1995 Australian Open (2) Natasha Zvereva Jana Novotná
Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
6–3, 6–7(3–7), 6–4
Winner 1995 French Open (5) Natasha Zvereva Jana Novotná
Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
6–7(6–8), 6–4, 7–5
Runner-up 1995 Wimbledon (2) Natasha Zvereva Jana Novotná
Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
5–7, 7–5, 6–4
Winner 1995 US Open (4) Natasha Zvereva Brenda Schultz-McCarthy
Rennae Stubbs
7–5, 6–3
Runner-up 1996 French Open Natasha Zvereva Lindsay Davenport
Mary Joe Fernández
6–2, 6–1
Winner 1996 US Open (5) Natasha Zvereva Jana Novotná
Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
1–6, 6–1, 6–4
Winner 1997 French Open (6) Natasha Zvereva Mary Joe Fernández
Lisa Raymond
6–2, 6–3
Winner 1997 Wimbledon (4) Natasha Zvereva Nicole Arendt
Manon Bollegraf
7–6(7–4), 6–4
Runner-up 1997 US Open Natasha Zvereva Lindsay Davenport
Jana Novotná
6–3, 6–4

Mixed doubles: 3 (0–3)

Outcome Year Championship Partner Opponents Score
Runner-up 1995 Australian Open Cyril Suk Natasha Zvereva
Rick Leach
7–6(7–4), 6–7(3–7), 6–4
Runner-up 1995 Wimbledon Cyril Suk Martina Navratilova
Jonathan Stark
6–4, 6–4
Runner-up 1995 US Open Cyril Suk Meredith McGrath
Matt Lucena
6–4, 6–4

Olympic finals

Doubles: 2 (2 gold medals)

Outcome Year Championship Partner Opponents Score
Gold 1992 Barcelona Mary Joe Fernández Conchita Martínez
Arantxa Sánchez
7–5, 2–6, 6–2
Gold 1996 Atlanta Mary Joe Fernández Jana Novotná
Helena Suková
7–6(8–6), 6–4

WTA Tour titles (71)

Singles (2)

No. Date Tournament Tier Surface Opponent in the final Score
1. October 26, 1986 Singapore VS Hard (i) Mercedes Paz 6–4, 2–6, 6–4
2. April 18, 1991 Albuquerque, US IV Hard Julie Halard-Decugis 6–0, 6–2

Doubles (69)

Women's doubles performance timeline

Tournament 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 SR W–L
Grand Slam Tournaments
Australian Open 1R 1R 2R NH 2R A A SF F QF W W F QF SF 2 / 12 38–10
French Open A A A A QF A 2R A W W W W W F W 6 / 9 45–3
Wimbledon A 3R A 3R 3R QF QF QF F W W W F SF W 4 / 13 53–9
US Open A 2R QF QF 3R W QF W 3R W SF SF W W F 5 / 14 57–9
Win–Loss 0–1 3–3 4–2 5–2 8–4 9–1 7–3 13–2 18–3 21–1 22–1 22–1 22–2 18–3 21–2 17 / 48 193–31
Year-End Championships
Tour Championships A A A QF A QF QF A F SF W W F SF QF 2 / 10 13–8
Category 5 & Tier I Tournaments
Washington No Levels A SF Tier II Not Held 0 / 1 2–1
Tokyo NH No Levels Category 4 Tier II SF A W W F 2 / 4 13–2
Boca Raton NH No Levels A QF T II QF A Tier II Not Held 0 / 2 3–2
Indian Wells Not Held C 4 Tier II A SF 0 / 1 2–1
Miami NH No Levels F F A F 2R QF W F A A 1 / 7 25–6
Hilton Head No Levels A A A QF QF W F F F SF 1 / 7 18–6
Rome No Levels C 3 A A A A QF W W F QF 2 / 5 15–3
Berlin No Levels A A A SF F W W QF A F 2 / 6 17–4
Montreal / Toronto No Levels A W A A F A A A A A 1 / 2 7–1
Zürich NH No Levels C 3 C 4 Tier II F A A A A 0 / 1 3–1
Philadelphia Not Held Tier II SF W QF Tier II 1 / 3 7–2
Career statistics
Year-End Ranking N/A N/A N/A 17 20 6 8 3 4 6 1 2 3 4 4

See also

References

  1. ^ according to Hispanic Magazine, 1988
  2. ^ """Gigi Fernández: "We Have A Mixed Identity. Puerto Rico Herald. Retrieved May 17, 2011. 
  3. ^ "WTA , Players , Stats , Gigi Fernández". Sonyericssonwtatour.com. Retrieved May 17, 2011. 
  4. ^ "2008 Inductee – Gigi Fernandez". Web.wm.edu. Retrieved May 17, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b "Gigi Fernandez , International Tennis Hall of Fame". Tennisfame.com. February 22, 1964. Retrieved May 17, 2011. 
  6. ^ a b "Fernandez remembered for her trademark zeal on the court – ESPN". ESPN. September 30, 2008. Retrieved May 17, 2011. 
  7. ^ "WTA , Players , Info , Gigi Fernández". wtatour.com. Retrieved May 29, 2015. 
  8. ^ a b according to WTA players guide
  9. ^ Crouse, Karen. "A Dream Deferred, Almost Too Long." The New York Times August 29, 2010.
  10. ^ http://www.babygoespro.com/buzz/pdf/Baby_Goes_Pro_PR_12-18-09.pdf
  11. ^ http://www.chelseapiersct.com/tennis/staff/gigi-fernandez.cfm

External links