Tennis: Amelie Mauresmo to be inducted into Hall of Fame

NEWPORT, UNITED STATES (AFP) - Former world No. 1 Amelie Mauresmo of France, Australian wheelchair star David Hall and industry leader Nancy Jeffert were announced on Monday as 2015 inductees into the International Tennis Hall of Fame.

The trio will be enshrined July 18 during a ceremony at an ATP grasscourt tournament outside the Hall of Fame in Newport, Rhode Island, after receiving at least 75 per cent support from a Hall selection committee.

"Amelie and David were both inspiring and highly accomplished competitors on the professional tours," Hall of Fame president Stan Smith said. "Nancy's commitment to tennis has been integral to the growth of the sport and will leave a permanent positive impact on tennis for years to come. We look forward to celebrating their many accomplishments."

Mauresmo won the 2006 Wimbledon and Australian Open titles, each time defeating Justine Henin in the final. She also made a remarkable run to the 1999 Australian Open final as an unseeded player, ousting world No. 1 Lindsay Davenport and two other seeds on the way.

The 35-year-old Frenchwoman, who spent 39 weeks on top of the rankings, was the Olympic women's runner-up in 2004 at Athens. She won 35 WTA titles and went 545-227 for her career before retiring in 2009.

Mauresmo is now a coach, counting Britain's Andy Murray among her charges, and has helped guide others, notably former world number one Victoria Azarenka and compatriot Marion Bartoli during her run to the 2013 Wimbledon title.

"I'm honoured and humbled to be selected," Mauresmo said. "Tennis has been my passion for as long as I can remember. I extend my gratitude to the selection committee for recognizing my career in this way. It's an extraordinary honour to have my career celebrated alongside the greatest champions of our sport, people who I have admired so greatly all my life."

Hall, a six-time Paralympic medallist, is the fourth wheelchair tennis player inducted into the Hall of Fame and it follows his induction earlier this year into his homeland's Hall of Fame.

Hall, 45, from Sydney, lost his legs after being struck by a car at age 16. He won Paralympic Games singles and doubles gold medals in 1996, 2000 and 2004. His career singles record before retiring in 2006 was 632-111.

"I feel so honoured and thankful that I am going to be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame," Hall said. "I'm sure the ceremony will be a very emotional moment for me. Tennis has taken me further than I ever imagined and I can't wait to get to Newport to share this wonderful honor with my family and friends."

Jeffett was elected in the contributor category in recognition of her commitment to the sport's development at the junior and women's professional levels. "I've loved every minute of working to grow the sport," she said. "I'm incredibly honoured and humbled to have my commitment to tennis recognised."

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.