General William Franklin (Billy)
Talbert
Male
United States of America
1918-09-04
Cincinnati, Ohio, United States of America
1999-02-28
New York, United States of America


About

But he went on to claim eight doubles titles at that event, and he became the Open\'s tournament director from 1971 to 1975 and from 1978 to 1987. He served in a transitional era, the Grand Slam event having moved from Forest Hills to the hardcourts at Flushing Meadows in 1978.

As an official, Talbert was instrumental in the adoption of the sudden-death tie breaker, an innovation that was initially unpopular with most players but received raves from spectators.

\'\'I never knew a player who bought a ticket,\'\' he said in defense of his successful lobbying for the tie breaker.

As a singles player, as a doubles partner, as a Davis Cup team member and as the Davis Cup team captain for five years, Talbert was a stylish tactician of the sport that helped him transcend the lifelong limitations enforced by diabetes.

He was best known for playing the right side next to his favorite partner, the spirited Gardnar Mulloy.

\'\'He played the forehand, I played the backhand, and if I was the power behind the partnership, he was surely the stylist up front,\'\' said Mulloy, who reached six United States National doubles finals, one short of a team record, alongside Talbert. \'\'Billy was the greatest doubles player we ever had, and he was a great friend; for 10 years there wasn\'t another American team that could beat us.\'\'

Talbert and Mulloy captured four of the six United States finals they reached, claiming titles in 1942, 1945, 1946 and 1948, the same year they clinched the Davis Cup championship for the United States with a victory over the Australian team of Billy Sidwell and Colin Long.

Talbert collected nine major doubles titles, four of them in the United States mixed event with Margaret Osborne duPont, with whom he set a record by winning consecutive championships from 1943 to 1946. He won the French doubles championship in 1950 with the 20-year-old Tony Trabert, a fellow Cincinnatian for whom he served as mentor.

Talbert\'s Davis Cup career as a player began in 1946 and concluded in 1952-53, when he was the team\'s playing captain. He was 2-0 in singles and 7-1 in doubles. As a Davis Cup captain, a role he held until 1957, Talbert was 13-4, and his team won the championship in 1954.

Talbert was unapologetic about being a relatively unregimental captain.

\'\'A party guy, a liberal captain, so I am,\'\' he said, \'\'but these guys are all adults, and they want to win as much as I do.\'\'

\'\'I admit I had a whale of a time when I played tennis,\'\' said Talbert, who never missed a tournament or a post-match celebration. \'\'I went to every party that they had.\'\'

William Franklin Talbert 3d, a native of Cincinnati, entered the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1967. He was also active in parlaying his tennis contacts into the business world, becoming executive vice president of the United States Banknote Corporation, a financial printing firm, in 1964. He remained with the company until his death.

As the United States Open\'s tournament director, Talbert was involved in several colorful episodes, from the sublime to the absurd. It was Talbert who decided to put the ingenue Chris Evert onto the Stadium Court in 1971, and it was Talbert who removed the chair umpire, Frank Hammond, and reinstated Ilie Nastase from default during a riotous match against John McEnroe in 1979.

Talbert wrote an autobiography, \'\'Playing For Life,\'\' and a history of the United States men\'s singles championships, \'\'Tennis Observed,\'\' with Pete Axthelm. He wrote \'\'The Game of Singles in Tennis\'\' and \'\'The Game of Doubles in Tennis\'\' with Bruce Old.

He is survived by two sons, Pike and Peter, both of New York, and two grandchildren. His wife, Nancy Pike, a former editor at Vogue and Life magazines and a fashion model, died in 1995.



Media


Archive statistics 1937 - 1968
48
674
491


Tournament wins 1953 - Colorado Championship (Amateur)
1952 - Delaware State Championship (Open)
1952 - Middle States Clay Courts (Open)
1952 - New York State Championships (Open)
1951 - Eastern Grass Court Championships (Amateur)
1951 - US International Indoor Championships (Amateur)
1951 - Cuban Championships (Amateur)
1951 - Middle States Clay Courts (Open)
1950 - Paris International Championships (Open)
1950 - Regiment de Chateauguay (Amateur)
1950 - Bermuda Championships (Amateur)
1949 - Buffalo Indoor (Open)
1949 - Tennessee Valley Invitation (Open)
1949 - Eastern Clay Court Championships (Open)
1949 - New York State Championships (Open)
1949 - Southampton Invitation (Long Island) (Amateur)
1948 - Newport Casino Tournament (Amateur)
1948 - Buffalo Indoor (Open)
1948 - New York State Clay Courts (Amateur)
1948 - New York State Championships (Open)
1948 - Spring Lake Invitation Tournament (Amateur)
1948 - US International Indoor Championships (Amateur)
1948 - Coral Beach Club Invitation (Open)
1948 - Bermuda Championships (Amateur)
1947 - Colonial Hotel Invitation (Amateur)
1947 - Buffalo Indoor (Open)
1947 - British Colonial (Amateur)
1947 - Cincinnati (ATP)
1946 - Dixie Championships (Amateur)
1946 - University of Miami (Amateur)
1946 - Southern Championships (Open)
1946 - Western States Championships (Open)
1946 - Florida West Coast (Amateur)
1945 - US Clay Courts (Open)
1945 - Cincinnati (ATP)
1945 - Seabright Invitational (Amateur)
1945 - Western States Championships (Open)
1945 - Delaware State Championship (Open)
1945 - Eastern Indoors (Open)
1945 - Eastern Grass Court Championships (Amateur)
1945 - Southampton Invitation (Long Island) (Amateur)
1944 - Eastern Grass Court Championships (Amateur)
1944 - Chicago City Championships (Open)
1943 - Cincinnati (ATP)
1942 - Newport Casino Tournament (Amateur)
1942 - Atlantic Coast (Amateur)
1941 - Connecticut Championships (Open)
1938 - Atlantic Coast (Amateur)


Tournaments Buffalo Indoor - 1968 Buffalo Indoor - 1967 Buffalo Indoor - 1966 Nassau Bowl - 1965 Buffalo Indoor - 1965 Buffalo Indoor - 1964 Buffalo Indoor - 1962 River Oaks Tournament - 1961 River Oaks Tournament - 1960 Caribe Hilton Championships - 1960 Buffalo Indoor - 1960 Pittsburgh Indoor - 1960 Dallas Invitation - 1960 River Oaks Tournament - 1959 Buffalo Indoor - 1959 Dallas Invitation - 1959 Pittsburgh Golf Club Invitation - 1959 Tuscaloosa Grass Court Invitation - 1959 River Oaks Tournament - 1958 Caribbean Championships - 1958 Caribe Hilton Championships - 1958 Buffalo Indoor - 1958 Pittsburgh Indoor - 1958 Dallas Invitation - 1958 New South Wales Championships - 1957 Nassau Bowl - 1957 Pacific Southwest Championships - 1957 River Oaks Tournament - 1957 Buffalo Indoor - 1957 Dallas Invitation - 1957 Tournament of Champions - 1957 Pacific Southwest Championships - 1956 River Oaks Tournament - 1956 Buffalo Indoor - 1956 Dallas Invitation - 1956 Buffalo Indoor - 1955 Dallas Invitation - 1955 Pittsburgh Golf Club Invitation - 1955 Australian Open - 1954 South Australian Championships - 1954 US Open - 1954 Colorado Championship - 1954 Southern Championships - 1954 Cincinnati - 1954 Western States Championships - 1954 US International Indoor Championships - 1954 River Oaks Tournament - 1954 Southampton Invitation (Long Island) - 1954 Dallas Invitation - 1954 US Open - 1953 Victorian Championships - 1953 New South Wales Championships - 1953 Colorado Championship - 1953 Western States Championships - 1953 US International Indoor Championships - 1953 US vs. Australia exhibitions - 1953 International Club Matches - USA - 1953 US Open - 1952 Bermuda Championships - 1952 Delaware State Championship - 1952 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1952 Spring Lake Invitation Tournament - 1952 Western States Championships - 1952 US International Indoor Championships - 1952 River Oaks Tournament - 1952 Palm Beach Invitation - 1952 New York State Championships - 1952 Miami Invitational - 1952 Buffalo Indoor - 1952 Middle States Clay Courts - 1952 Greenbrier Autumn Tournament - 1952 US Open - 1951 Pacific Coast Championship - 1951 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1951 Spring Lake Invitation Tournament - 1951 Cincinnati - 1951 US International Indoor Championships - 1951 River Oaks Tournament - 1951 Cuban Championships - 1951 Middle States Clay Courts - 1951 Wimbledon - 1950 Monte Carlo - 1950 Roland Garros - 1950 US Open - 1950 Paris International Championships - 1950 Bermuda Championships - 1950 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1950 Western States Championships - 1950 Italian International Championships - 1950 US International Indoor Championships - 1950 US vs. France Exhibition - 1950 U.S. vs. Sweden Exhibition - 1950 U.S. vs. Germany Exhibition - 1950 Pan American Championships - 1950 Buffalo Indoor - 1950 US vs. Denmark Exhibition - 1950 Regiment de Chateauguay - 1950 US Open - 1949 Eastern Clay Court Championships - 1949 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1949 Spring Lake Invitation Tournament - 1949 Tennessee Valley Invitation - 1949 US International Indoor Championships - 1949 River Oaks Tournament - 1949 Southampton Invitation (Long Island) - 1949 New York State Championships - 1949 Good Neighbor Tournament - 1949 Buffalo Indoor - 1949 New York Clay Courts - 1949 US Open - 1948 Bermuda Championships - 1948 Eastern Clay Court Championships - 1948 Newport Casino Tournament - 1948 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1948 Seabright Invitational - 1948 Spring Lake Invitation Tournament - 1948 US International Indoor Championships - 1948 River Oaks Tournament - 1948 New York State Championships - 1948 Coral Beach Club Invitation - 1948 New York State Clay Courts - 1948 Buffalo Indoor - 1948 Australian Open - 1947 South Australian Championships - 1947 US Open - 1947 Newport Casino Tournament - 1947 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1947 Seabright Invitational - 1947 Spring Lake Invitation Tournament - 1947 Cincinnati - 1947 River Plate Championships - 1947 Pacific Southwest Championships - 1947 US International Indoor Championships - 1947 River Oaks Tournament - 1947 Southampton Invitation (Long Island) - 1947 University of Miami - 1947 Buffalo Indoor - 1947 British Colonial - 1947 Tampa Invitation - 1947 Colonial Hotel Invitation - 1947 US Open - 1946 Victorian Championships - 1946 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1946 Seabright Invitational - 1946 Southern Championships - 1946 US Clay Courts - 1946 Western States Championships - 1946 US International Indoor Championships - 1946 River Oaks Tournament - 1946 Dixie Championships - 1946 Southampton Invitation (Long Island) - 1946 Florida West Coast - 1946 Heart of America - 1946 University of Miami - 1946 Pan American Championships - 1946 Miami Invitational - 1946 Buffalo Indoor - 1946 US Open - 1945 Delaware State Championship - 1945 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1945 Seabright Invitational - 1945 Cincinnati - 1945 US Clay Courts - 1945 Western States Championships - 1945 Pacific Southwest Championships - 1945 Southampton Invitation (Long Island) - 1945 Eastern Indoors - 1945 US Open - 1944 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1944 Cincinnati - 1944 US Clay Courts - 1944 Western States Championships - 1944 Pacific Southwest Championships - 1944 Southampton Invitation (Long Island) - 1944 Pan American Championships - 1944 Chicago City Championships - 1944 US Open - 1943 Cincinnati - 1943 US Clay Courts - 1943 Pan American Championships - 1943 Pan American Championships b - 1943 US Open - 1942 Newport Casino Tournament - 1942 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1942 Sugar Bowl - 1942 Cincinnati - 1942 US Clay Courts - 1942 Pacific Southwest Championships - 1942 Atlantic Coast - 1942 University of Miami - 1942 US Open - 1941 Newport Casino Tournament - 1941 Pacific Coast Championship - 1941 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1941 Seabright Invitational - 1941 Southern Championships - 1941 Sugar Bowl - 1941 Tennessee Valley Invitation - 1941 Cincinnati - 1941 US Clay Courts - 1941 Pacific Southwest Championships - 1941 US International Indoor Championships - 1941 Connecticut Championships - 1941 River Oaks Tournament - 1941 Southampton Invitation (Long Island) - 1941 South Florida - 1941 Southeastern Florida - 1941 US Open - 1940 Bermuda Championships - 1940 Newport Casino Tournament - 1940 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1940 Seabright Invitational - 1940 US Clay Courts - 1940 Western States Championships - 1940 Pacific Southwest Championships - 1940 Dixie Championships - 1940 Maryland State Championships - 1940 US Open - 1939 Newport Casino Tournament - 1939 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1939 Seabright Invitational - 1939 US Clay Courts - 1939 Maryland State Championships - 1939 Fox River Valley Championship - 1939 Norfolk Invitation Tournament - 1939 Seigniory Club Tournament - 1939 Eastern Slope - 1939 US Open - 1938 Newport Casino Tournament - 1938 Eastern Grass Court Championships - 1938 Norfolk Invitation Tournament - 1938 Seigniory Club Tournament - 1938 Pennsylvania Clay Courts - 1938 Atlantic Coast - 1938 Kentucky State Tournament - 1937 Cincinnati - 1937 US Clay Courts - 1937 Ohio State Championships - 1937

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