Drawing: Ivan Lendl

Autographed drawing of tennis player Ivan Lendl
Ivan Lendl joined Sascha Zverev’s team in August this year with immediate results. The young German stunned World #1 Novak Djokovic to win the biggest title of his career, the ATP World Tour Finals at the O2 in London on Sunday.
The 58 year old Czech-American, who retired from playing in 1994 after winning eight major and seven year-ending championships was World #1 for 270 weeks during the 1980s, finishing with 94 singles titles. During his time coaching Britain’s Andy Murray, the Scot won three majors, two Olympic gold medals, an ATP Tour Finals title, (also defeating Novak) and reached World #1 in November 2016.
Ivan signed this drawing for me when he arrived at the O2 on Saturday before Sascha beat Roger Federer in the semifinal.

Drawing: Ivan Lendl

Ivan Lendl

Included in the list of tennis greats, Ivan Lendl was one of the most dominate players in the 1980’s, winning 8 Grand Slams and reaching 19 finals. He also lead Czechoslovakia to a Davis Cup victory.

Ivan’s eight Slams include two Australian, three US and three French titles. The only Slam to elude him was Wimbledon.  He did however reach two finals, being beaten by Boris Becker and Pat Cash.  His playing style revolved around strength, using a heavy top spin from the baseline, ushering in the modern era of ‘power tennis’.

Between 2012-14 Ivan coached the current World Number 2 Andy Murray to Wimbledon and US Open victories and an Olympic Gold Medal. In June this year he returned with the Scot securing his fifth Queens and second Wimbledon titles.

A large crowd gathered around Court 19 at Wimbledon last week as Andy practiced prior to his Championship victory. As you can imagine when he came off the court he was mobbed. Ivan, by contrast, slipped down the side near the media centre and his relatively short walk to safety as only interrupted by me and my drawing which he signed on the stroll.