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The daughter of tennis pro Jimmie Evert, who was ranked 11th in the U. S. in 1943, Chris turned professional on her eighteenth birthday in 1972.
Evert won her first major titles, the Wimbledon and French Open singles, in 1974. She also won at Wimbledon in 1976 and 1981 and was a finalist on five other occasions. Evert tied the record of Molla Mallory and Helen Jacobs by winning the U. S. Open four years in a row, from 1975 through 1978, and she won that title again in 1980 and 1982.
She was a finalist at the French Open ten years in a row, from 1973 through 1982, and won the championship in 1974, 1975, 1979, 1980, 1983, 1985, and 1986. With her Australian Open titles in 1982 and 1984, Evert had a total of 18 grand slim singles championships, third behind Margaret Smith Court and Helen Wills Moody.
When she was at her most consistent, Evert could put together some remarkable streaks. As an amateur in 1971, she won 46 consecutive matches before losing to Billy Jean King in the U. S. Open finals. Her 56-match winning streak in 1974 is a modern record for women. In 1981, she won 72 of 78 matches and swept to the Wimbledon title without losing a set. And from August of 1973 to May of 1979, Evert won 125 straight matches on clay, a surface that favored her style.
The Associated Press female athlete of the year in 1974, 1975, 1977, and 1980, Evert had a career record of 1,304 victories and only 146 losses. Her last major tournament was the 1989 U. S. Open. After losing to Zina Garrison in the fifth round, Evert typically exited with a simple wave to the cheering crowd of more than 20,000. Garrison, not Evert, burst into tears.
In June, 2011 she joined ESPN as a tennis commentator.
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