He was a Danish tennis player. He was born in Copenhagen, and was the first Danish tennis player ever to have played in a Men's Singles final in a Grand Slam tournament.
Nielsen reached the singles finals of Wimbledon in 1953 (beating Ken Rosewall and Jaroslav Drobný before losing to Vic Seixas) and 1955 (beating Rosewall before losing to Tony Trabert). Both times he reached the final he was unseeded. Before this, he won the Boys' Singles at Wimbledon in 1947 (defeating Sven Davidson). Besides his successes at Wimbledon, he won the Boys' singles at the French Open, and reached senior quarterfinals in the US Open in 1953.
With Althea Gibson, Nielsen won the US Open mixed doubles in 1957, thereby becoming the first Dane to have ever won a Grand Slam event as a senior. During his long career he won around 30 international titles, played 96 Davis Cup matches for Denmark (with a 53–43 record), and holds the record of having won the most Danish national tennis championships (50). Nielsen turned professional in 1960, and played on the pro circuit.
After ending his active career, Nielsen held numerous honourable positions in leading international tennis associations, as well as being supervisor and referee at many Grand Slam events. He was a commentator on the Danish version of the TV channel Eurosport until late 2006.
Nielsen was the grandfather of Danish tennis player Frederik Løchte Nielsen. He followed his grandfather and became the second Dane to win a Grand Slam tournament at the 2012 Wimbledon men's doubles.
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