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Darlene Hard (1936–2021), 3-time major tennis champion

by Kirk Fox

Darlene Hard was a Hall of Fame tennis player who won 3 major singles championships and 13 major doubles championships.

Tennis Star

Darlene Hard was taught a powerful serve and volley games on the hard courts of Los Angeles by her mother. She won the U.S. championship and the French championship in 1960 and defended her U.S. championship with a victory in 1961. She played in two Wimbledon finals, losing to Althea Gibson in 1957. Her game was well suited for doubles and she won 13 major doubles titles. Hard was ranked in the top ten in the world from 1957 through 1963 and was the top ranked woman in the U.S. from 1960 through 1963. Her last Grand Slam title came when she won the U.S. Open doubles title with Francoise Durr in 1969, coming out of retirement after becoming a teaching pro.

Tributes to Darlene Hard

Full Obituary: Star Tribune

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