Manolo Santana
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Manolo Santana

Spanish tennis driver

One of the highlights sports figures of Spain in the decade of the 60.

ABOUT MANOLO SANTANA

Manolo was a genius on clay, he could send the ball to the most unbelievable angles and he would astonish the audience with his drop and love shots. He improved his general skills, especially his serve and volleys, becoming an excellent player in all surfaces.

"In my pilgrimage across the world I explain, on numerous occasions, how important it was for the Spanish tennis Santana phenomenon. I've always said that sports organization of a country is like a pyramid, with many athletes on the basis of which will emerge in the top, without a doubt, the champion, medalist. This type of pyramid upside must be added another, which is the creation, albeit artificially, Champion, on the basis that thousands of practitioners attracted by its triumphs arise. This was Santana, the inverted top of the pyramid that not only gave the glory days of Spanish sport, as his victories at Wimbledon and Roland Garros and historical performances in Davis Cup but also the promoter of the construction of thousands tennis courts and driving tens of thousands of practitioners in the country. His name is written in golden letters in the book of honor of the Spanish sport.”

 

Manolo was a magician on clay, sent the ball to the most incredible angles, you baffled with lobs and drop shots. He improved his overall game, especially his service and his volleys, leading to outstanding on all surfaces.

PROFESSIONAL CAREER

  • Wimbledon Champion in 1966. Until 2008, Manolo was the only Spanish player who had won the Wimbledon Tournament, as well as 4 Grand Slam Tournaments.
  • ATP Number 1 in 1966.
  • Three times Roland Garros (French Open) champion: 1961 and 1964 in singles and 1963 in doubles, with his great friend - and opponent in countless occasions - Roy Emerson.
  • US Open (New York) Champion in 1965. This trophy was handed to Manolo by Robert Kennedy.
  • Seven times (1961-1967) within the ATP Top Ten.
  • Junior Spanish Champion: 1955-1956
  • Eight times Spanish Champion (1958, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1968, 1969).
  • Champion of the Galea Nations Cup for under 21 players (1956-1957-1958).
  • Manolo has played 119 matches with the Spanish Davis Cup Team. He won 69 out of 85 singles matches, and 24 out of 34 doubles.
  • Manolo was also the Captain of the Spanish Davis Cup Team for 8 years. From 1980 to 1984, and from 1995 to 1999.
  • For several years Manolo played Senior Tournaments all across the world. In 2000 he won Roland Garros in doubles, teaming up with American Stan Smith.
  • Manolo has been decorated many times as a recognision for his great contribution to sports in general, and tennis in particular:   
    • Gold Medal for Sporting Merit
    • Great Cross of Isabel la Católica
    • Gold Medal of the City of Madrid
    • Great Cross of the Royal Order of Sporting Merit (2000)
    • Gold Medal of the Comunity of Madrid
  • For the last 10 years Manolo Santana has also been working as a tennis commentator for TeleMadrid, Canal Plus and RTVE (Spanish Public Broadcasting), as well as collaborating with different sports newspapers (El Mundo).
  • Since 2002, Manolo is the Director of the Mutua Madrileña Madrid Masters 1000 (previously known as Madrid Masters Series), one of the most prestigious tennis events in the world.
  • Manolo continues dedicating his life to his biggest passion: tennis. Read more about Manolo Santana.



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