Romanian tennis player Ion Tiriac is set to be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame at a Class of 2013 Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony to be held on July 13, 2013 in Newport, the US. He will be included alongside Martina Higins, Thelma Coyne Long, Cliff Drysdale and Charlie Pasrell.
Ion Tiriac has been elected in recognition of his work to grow the sport through roles as an influential player manager and successful tournament promoter. On the official website of the event, Ion Tiriac is presented as a successful doubles player turned tennis power broker. He has been an influential tennis leader in roles ranging from coach to player manager to tournament promoter.
In the 1970s, Tiriac and fellow Romanian Ilie Nastase partnered to form a successful doubles team. Tiriac took on a mentor type role in the partnership, and parlayed that experience into a successful career in tennis administration. Tiriac took a sharp, business-like approach to tennis and he worked tirelessly to promote the players, grow the tournaments, and build up interest in the sport through television broadcasts.
He went on to manage the careers of top players including Hall of Famer Guillermo Vilas, Mary Joe Fernandez, Goran Ivanisevic, and most notably, Hall of Famer Boris Becker, who won five Grand Slam titles while working with Tiriac.
In addition, Tiriac was a promoter and tournament director for numerous events including the ATP World Tour’s season-ending Masters Grand Prix, and two of the largest Masters 1000 events, the Italian Open and the Madrid Masters. He is still an active leader on the Madrid Masters, and under his leadership the tournament has grown immensely, and is one of the most well attended annual events in Spain. In addition, he continues to promote tennis in his home country of Romania and is the owner/promoter of the BRD Nastase Tiriac Trophy, an ATP World Tour 250 event held annually in Bucharest.
As a player, Tiriac was an instrumental part of Romania’s Davis Cup team, competing for 15 years, and helping the team advance to the finals three times. In 1970, he partnered with Nastase to win the French Open doubles title.
In addition to his tennis work, since the fall of the communist government in Romania in 1989, he developed businesses in banking, real estate, and lead social services initiatives.
Martina Hingis, a former world No. 1 and the winner of 15 Grand Slam tournament titles in singles, doubles, and mixed doubles, has been elected to receive the highest honor in the sport of tennis, enshrinement in the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Joining Hingis in the Class of 2013 will be two co-founders of the ATP, longtime ESPN tennis broadcaster Cliff Drysdale and tennis promoter and industry leader Charlie Pasarell, both of whom have been elected in the Contributor Category.
It was previously announced that Australian tennis legend Thelma Coyne Long, winner of 19 Grand Slam tournament titles between the 1930s and 1950s, has been elected in the Master Player Category. The Hall of Fame Class of 2013 was announced today as part of the World Tennis Day festivities, and the new class will be honored tonight in a Center Court presentation at Madison Square Garden during the BNP Paribas Showdown.
Photo courtesy of Tennis Fame