General Michael Grenfell (Mike)
Davies
Male
Wales
1936-01-09
Swansea, Wales
2015-11-02
Sarasota, Florida, United States of America


About

In recognition of his immense contributions to growing the sport worldwide, Mike Davies, who served as CEO of the New Haven Open at Yale presented by First Niagara, has been inducted to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in the Class of 2012. An influential, behind-the-scenes executive in the tennis world, Mike had a 40+ year career in tennis promotion and administration, with achievements ranging from forging the first, highly successful television/tennis contracts and negotiating major sponsorships to introducing the colored tennis ball to the game.

While the rich history of tennis dates back hundreds of years, the game as we know it today- world-class tournaments, compelling, professional players, and dynamic international telecasts - is really just over fifty years old. The elevation of pro tennis from its conservative, pre-Open Era days to the exciting, global sport we all enjoy today is a result of the vision and hard work of dedicated behind-the-scenes leaders, notably Mike Davies.

After a successful pre-Open Era playing career, Mike had 40+ year career in tennis promotion and administration officially began in 1968, when he became Executive Director of World Championship Tennis. It was a pivotal time in tennis, and Mike hit the ground running with new ideas to make professional tennis better for players, more enjoyable for fans, and financially viable. While leading the WCT, Mike was at the forefront of staging tournaments and selling sponsorships and television rights, thereby creating a platform for professional tennis to expand into large stadiums and major cities. In 1970, Mike launched the first multi-million dollar pro tour, which consisted of 20 tournaments throughout the world, and culminated in a final that aired on NBC– the very first network broadcast of tennis. The airing drew an extraordinary 20 million viewers, and interest in tennis surged. The telecast was just one of Mike’s many innovations that are still in play today.

As a true trail-blazer for the sport of tennis, many aspects of the game are attributed to Mike. For example, when matches were running too long, Mike mandated a tie-breaker—the first time this was used on the professional circuit. Difficult to see the ball and the players on a telecast? Mike introduced yellow tennis balls and colored apparel. Pace of play too unpredictable? New rules of 30 seconds between points and 90 seconds between games were instituted. And when the networks made it difficult for companies to advertise, Mike sold Wilson on court branding rights – forging the way for growth in sports broadcasts and sponsorships.

In 1981, Mike moved on to serve as the Marketing Director and then Executive Director for the Association of Tennis Professionals (later known as the ATP). The ATP was almost bankrupt at the time, and when Mike left after three years they had more than $1 million in assets. He helped consolidate the players' pension plan and created more jobs for players with bigger draws, more tournaments and increased prize money.

In the late 1980's, Mike served as General Manager of the International Tennis Federation (ITF). He is widely credited with revitalizing the Davis Cup, and putting the event back on firm financial footing during his tenure with the ITF, ultimately increasing the future value of the Davis Cup and Fed Cup around the world.

Not just a mover and shaker behind the scenes, Mike was also an on-court star in his day. Originally from Swansea, Wales, Mike was Britain’s No. 1 ranked player in 1957, 1959, and 1960 and he was a member of the British Davis Cup team. In 1960 he reached the men’s doubles final at Wimbledon with Bobby Wilson, marking the last time a British male has been in the final of Wimbledon's men's singles or men's doubles.

For recognizing the immense potential tennis offered as a professional sport, along with the dedication and drive to make his visions a reality, we salute 2012 Hall of Famer Mike Davies, an influential contributor, effective innovator, and a man who has truly shaped the history of our sport.



Media


Archive statistics 1952 - 1969
36
554
343


Tournament wins 1966 - Rochester Pros (Amateur)
1965 - US Pro Championships (Professional)
1961 - Hanover Pro Championships (Professional)
1961 - Slazenger Professional (Professional)
1960 - Florida Gold Coast (Amateur)
1960 - South Florida (Open)
1960 - British Hard Court Championships (Open)
1960 - London Hard Courts (Amateur)
1960 - Portuguese International Championships (Open)
1960 - Kulm Carlton (Amateur)
1960 - Venezuelan International Clay Courts (Amateur)
1960 - Florida State Championship (Open)
1960 - Dixie Championships (Amateur)
1960 - Netherlands International Championships (Open)
1960 - St. Moritz Suvretta (Amateur)
1959 - Moroccan International (Amateur)
1959 - Surrey Championships (Amateur)
1959 - Viareggio (Amateur)
1959 - Ortisei (Amateur)
1959 - Lacco Ameno (Amateur)
1958 - London Hard Courts (Amateur)
1958 - West of England Championships (Amateur)
1958 - British Covered Court Championships (Amateur)
1958 - Worcestershire Championships (Amateur)
1957 - Australia Day Tournament (Amateur)
1957 - Colac Australia Day ()
1957 - Worcestershire Championships (Amateur)
1957 - New Zealand Championships (Amateur)
1956 - Worcestershire Championships (Amateur)
1955 - Roehampton Grass Courts (Amateur)
1954 - Palace Hotel (Amateur)
1954 - Bedford (Amateur)
1953 - Swanage Hardcourts (Amateur)
1953 - Shropshire Championships (Amateur)
1953 - Ilkley (Open)
1953 - Bedford (Amateur)


Tournaments Glenwood Manor Invitation - 1969 Tulsa Invitation - 1969 Northwestern Invitation - 1969 Wimbledon - 1968 US Pro Championships - 1968 French Professional Championship - 1968 San Diego Pro Championships - 1968 French Professional Championship - 1967 Madison Square Garden Pro Championships - 1967 Orlando Professional Championships - 1967 Pacific Coast Professionals - 1967 Wembley Professional Championships - 1967 Los Angeles Professional Championships - 1967 New York Pro Tournament - 1967 San Juan Pros - 1967 Planters Pro Challenge Cup - 1967 Birmingham Pro Classic - 1967 Pacific International Pro Tournament - 1967 US Pro Hardcourts - 1967 International Pro Cup - 1967 World Pro Championships - 1967 US Pro Grasscourt Championships - 1967 Binghampton Pro Championships - 1967 Cincinnati Pro Championships - 1967 Colonial Pro Invitation - 1967 Marseille Pros Autumn - 1967 French Professional Championship - 1966 Madison Square Garden Pro Championships - 1966 Johannesburg Pros - 1966 Wembley Professional Championships - 1966 US Pro Hardcourts - 1966 World Pro Championships - 1966 US Pro Grasscourt Championships - 1966 Binghampton Pro Championships - 1966 Rochester Pros - 1966 Geneva Professional Gold Trophy - 1966 Milano Professional Championships - 1966 Barcelona Pros - 1966 Hollywood Pro Challenge Cup - 1966 Peacock Gap Pros - 1966 Newport Pro Tournament - 1966 Forest Hills Pros - 1966 Benoni Professionals - 1966 Hollywood Pro Challenge Cup b - 1966 US Pro Championships - 1965 Midland Counties Championships - 1965 French Professional Championship - 1965 Orlando Professional Championships - 1965 Cannes Pro Championships - 1965 Wembley Professional Championships - 1965 New York Pro Tournament - 1965 US Pro Grasscourt Championships - 1965 WCT - St. Louis - 1965 Masters Round Robin Professionals - 1965 Peacock Gap Pros - 1965 Seafirst-Greater Seattle Pros - 1965 Greater Washington Pros - 1965 Newport Pro Tournament - 1965 Sitges Pros - 1965 US Pro Championships - 1964 US Pro Indoors - 1964 World Professional Tournament - 1964 Baltimore Pro Championships - 1964 Milwaukee Pros - 1964 WCT - St. Louis - 1964 French Professional Championship - 1963 Johannesburg Pros - 1963 Wembley Professional Championships - 1963 Italian International Professionals - 1963 Kitzbühel Pros - 1963 French Professional Championship - 1962 Johannesburg Pros - 1962 Wembley Professional Championships - 1962 Slazenger Professional - 1962 Kramer Cup - 1962 Geneva Professional Gold Trophy - 1962 Swedish Professional Championships - 1962 South African Professional Championships - 1962 Rhodesian Professional Championships - 1962 Zurich Professional Championship - 1962 Slazenger Professional - 1961 London Indoor Professionals - 1961 Professional Clay Courts - 1961 Hanover Pro Championships - 1961 Scandinavian Professional Championships - 1961 Wimbledon - 1960 Monte Carlo - 1960 Roland Garros - 1960 Cannes Carlton - 1960 Miami - 1960 Irish Championships - 1960 Netherlands International Championships - 1960 US International Indoor Championships - 1960 British Hard Court Championships - 1960 Dixie Championships - 1960 German International Championships - 1960 Portuguese International Championships - 1960 Baden-Baden - 1960 Florida State Championship - 1960 Kulm Carlton - 1960 South Florida - 1960 French Professional Championship - 1960 Northern Lawn Tennis Association Tournament - 1960 Caribe Hilton Championships - 1960 Miami Invitational - 1960 Good Neighbor Tournament - 1960 Austin Smith Championships - 1960 Altamira International Invitation - 1960 Colombia International - 1960 London Hard Courts - 1960 Masters Invitation - 1960 Gstaad - 1960 St. Moritz Suvretta - 1960 Venezuelan International Clay Courts - 1960 Florida Gold Coast - 1960 London Indoor Professionals - 1960 Wimbledon - 1959 Swiss International Championships - 1959 Sugar Bowl - 1959 Italian International Championships - 1959 British Hard Court Championships - 1959 Casablanca - 1959 Surrey Championships - 1959 Caribbean Championships - 1959 Caribe Hilton Championships - 1959 Kingston International Invitation - 1959 Altamira International Invitation - 1959 Colombia International - 1959 Viareggio - 1959 Priory Club - 1959 St. Anne's on Sea - 1959 Gstaad - 1959 Ortisei - 1959 Moroccan International - 1959 Lacco Ameno - 1959 San Benedetto del Tronto - 1959 Lesa - 1959 Ischia - 1959 Wimbledon - 1958 Monte Carlo - 1958 US Open - 1958 Pacific Coast Championship - 1958 Irish Championships - 1958 Pacific Southwest Championships - 1958 British Hard Court Championships - 1958 Dixie Championships - 1958 German International Championships - 1958 West of England Championships - 1958 Surrey Championships - 1958 Cannes Gallia - 1958 Menton - 1958 British Covered Court Championships - 1958 International Club Matches - GBR - 1958 Pan American Championships - 1958 Westchester - 1958 London Hard Courts - 1958 Gstaad - 1958 Surrey - 1958 Tally Ho! - 1958 Worcestershire Championships - 1958 O'Keefe International Invitation - 1958 St. Moritz Suvretta - 1958 Australian Open - 1957 Wimbledon - 1957 Roland Garros - 1957 US Open - 1957 New Zealand Championships - 1957 Colorado Championship - 1957 Newport Casino - 1957 Sugar Bowl - 1957 Pacific Southwest Championships - 1957 British Hard Court Championships - 1957 Argentina International Championships - 1957 West of England Championships - 1957 Chilean National Championships - 1957 Pan American Championships - 1957 North Island Champiosnhip - 1957 Asian Championships - 1957 Surrey - 1957 Worcestershire Championships - 1957 Tournament of Champions - 1957 Australia Day Tournament - 1957 Colac Australia Day - 1957 Wimbledon - 1956 Roland Garros - 1956 US Open - 1956 New South Wales Championships - 1956 Newport Casino - 1956 Pacific Coast Championship - 1956 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1956 Pacific Southwest Championships - 1956 British Hard Court Championships - 1956 Queensland Championships - 1956 Welsh Championships - 1956 Midland Counties Championships - 1956 International Club Matches - FRA - 1956 Scandinavian Championships - 1956 Cumberland Hard Courts - 1956 London Hard Courts - 1956 Surrey - 1956 Tally Ho! - 1956 Worcestershire Championships - 1956 O'Keefe International Invitation - 1956 South Australian b - 1956 Wimbledon - 1955 British Hard Court Championships - 1955 Kent Championships - 1955 North of England Championships - 1955 Midland Counties Championships - 1955 South of England Championships - 1955 British Covered Court Championships - 1955 International Club Matches - GBR - 1955 Roehampton Grass Courts - 1955 Palace Hotel - 1955 Herga Club - 1955 London Hard Courts - 1955 Surrey - 1955 Guildford Hardcourts - 1955 H.I.K. Tournament b - 1955 Australian Open - 1954 Wimbledon - 1954 South Australian Championships - 1954 British Hard Court Championships - 1954 Surrey Championships - 1954 Welsh Championships - 1954 British Covered Court Championships - 1954 Palace Hotel - 1954 Cumberland Hard Courts - 1954 Surrey - 1954 Bedford - 1954 Wimbledon - 1953 Shropshire Championships - 1953 Ilkley - 1953 Ireland vs. Wales - 1953 Bedford - 1953 Swanage Hardcourts - 1953 British Covered Court Championships - 1952

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