Sunday, July 6, 2014

Out Spotlight

Today's Out Spotlight was an English tennis player, fashion designer, spy, and author. He was a firm fixture on the professional tennis tour for over sixty years. Today's Out Spotlight is Ted Tinling.

Cuthbert Collingwood "Ted" Tinling, sometimes know as Teddy, was born in Eastbourne June 23, 1910, the son of James Tinling, a chartered accountant. His brother James Collingwood Tinling was a member of the team that built the first jet engine.

In 1923, suffering from asthma, his parents sent him to the French Riviera per doctor's orders. It was there he began playing tennis, particularly at the Nice Tennis Club where the then biggest star of the game, Suzanne Lenglen, would practice. Despite Tinling's age, Lenglen's father asked him if he would umpire one of her upcoming matches and he would go on to be her personal umpire for two years in between a short career as a player himself. He umpired more than 100 matches for Lenglen.

His friendship with Lenglen led him to his first Wimbledon Championships in 1927, where he became player liaison until 1949. During World War II, he was a Lieutenant-Colonel in the Intelligence Corps in Algiers and Germany.

Over the decades, he was the premier dress designer in tennis for many of the great champions including Maria Bueno and Martina Navratilova. Tinling designed dresses for almost all of the great female players throughout the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. His dresses were worn by the Wimbledon ladies' champion in 1959, 1960, 1961, 1964, 1969, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1978 and 1979. The last Wimbledon champion to wear a Tinling creation was Martina Navratilova in 1979 when she wore his designs to triumph in both the singles and doubles events.

In 1983, Billie-Jean King wore a Tinling dress in a final for the last time, when she reached the Wimbledon Mixed Doubles final. The last Tinling dress worn at Wimbledon was by Rosemary Casals in 1984, when she lost in the first round.

Although he only ever designed dresses for Chris Evert's Federation & Wightman Cup appearances, he designed her wedding dress when she married John Lloyd in 1979.

His designs were not without risk, it was a design in 1949 – lace tennis panties (for Gussie Moran) – that led him to being asked to take leave from his position at Wimbledon.

A close friend of Billie Jean King, he designed her dress for the famous Battle of the Sexes tennis match versus Bobby Riggs in 1973, Tinling became the player liaison on the Virginia Slims Women's Tennis Association tour that King helped to create.

Tinling was singularly important and influential in the tennis world. Across the twentieth century, he was one of the masterminds of the tennis community. While he designing his role in the infrastructure of tennis became more important and he became an official media spokesperson for the game. He was employed again by Wimbledon from 1982 as a player liaison. Most significantly, he became a revered Chief of Protocol for the International Tennis Federation and a Director of International Liaison for the women’s pro tour. His knowledge of all facets of the game was incomparable. He was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1986.

Tinling was openly gay. He wrote several books on tennis in the 1980s but the respiratory problems of his youth continued to affect him and contributed to his death in May of 1990. After his passing it was revealed he had been a British Intelligence spy during World War II.


prairiegirl said...

My only question is why isn't Jake wearing clothes appropriate for the summer season in that posted photo from yesterday?

He's dressed like it's early spring, that's how he's dressed. And does he realize how silly it looks to be at a farmers market in July, wearing a hood on your head? geez louise.

Speaking of silly. lol. Man, I have to tell you guys, a big screw up of mine has been in existence since I've been a little kid. And some things just don't change.

I have spilled more drinks than you can shake a stick at. And why would this be? Would it be because a) I don't drink at the dinner table but in the living room all the time? b) I'm not careful? and c) I don't pay attention?

Everywhere I've lived - I've spilled drinks. And tonight, I knocked over 1/2 of my cup of Tazo's bumble, brambleberry tea whatever it's called on my mom's side table with the edge of a toss pillow. It settled on my phone, it got on my cloth purse handle, it was all over the table itself, soaked the coaster, it got on my Colombo DVD case, it poured into my NB shoe that was on the floor and I had to go empty the shoe into the kitchen sink.

And my mom came over to help; in the process, she set the glass on another table and it fell over again and fell on the carpet, dripping the remains of even more dark tea onto the carpet again....

Oh my dog. It was the spill that wouldn't end. I ran for paper towels, she gave me a bathroom handtowel and it stained that....

My shoe is still soaked on the inside and oh boy. What a mess.

**turns red**. I will be spilling drinks until I'm in my grave.

What a nimrod, lol. Geez.

LOLLL!!! And now I went to check on my pan of popcorn that was popping because it was sounding funny and saw that I had forgotten to put the lid on and there was popcorn everywhere. What a huge mess!

It might be time to call it a night. I am not fit for society.
: (

Florida Tom said...

Being a big tennis fan I know that Tinling was a legend and very admired in the sport. Good stuff SK.

destiny said...

I've always spilled my drinks too PG, but I don't think I've ever hit so many objects with one spill. I was especially bad as a kid, and I'd always send my milk flying on the rare occasions when we'd dine out.