In 1918, Vinnie Richards, at the age of 15 years 139 days, became the youngest player ever to win a U.S. national title when he won the men?s doubles with Bill Tilden. He was a student at Fordham Prep at the time and later attended Fordham University and Columbia University. Richards went on to win four more U.S. men?s doubles titles, and he won once at Wimbledon, once at the French championships, and took the U.S. mixed doubles twice. Although he was the only triple medal winner in the 1924 Olympic lawn tennis events, he survived some desperately close matches. Of the five matches Richards played on the way to the singles title, three went to five sets and another to four sets. Both the semi-final and the final of the men?s doubles went to five sets and, adding in his mixed doubles schedule, it is not surprising that Richards lost 18 lbs. (8 kg.) during the tournament. After the Davis Cup matches of 1926, Vinnie Richards turned professional at the age of 23 and won the first U.S. pro singles title.
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