Oliver Prenn is the son of the Russian-born German lawn tennis player of the 1920s and 1930s, Daniel Prenn, who, being Jewish, was forced to leave Nazi Germany in the early 1930s. Oliver Prenn was a promising junior tennis player and notably won the boys’ singles title at the Junior Championships of Great Britain in September 1957, beating Roy Dixon 6-0, 6-2 in the final, which was played on a hard court at the All England Lawn Tennis Club, Wimbledon.
Oliver Prenn subsequently attended Oxford University, where he captained the tennis team. Although he took part in some tennis tournaments, mainly in Great Britain, in the early 1960s, he was unable to build on his early promise and soon joined his father, who had become a successful businessman. In later life Oliver Prenn and his wife Nyda (née Machin), a former model, became patrons of the arts, notably helping to establish the prestigious Turner Prize in 1984, and sponsoring it for the first three years of its existence.
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