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Goran Ivanisevic, Conchita Martinez among Hall of Fame nominees

Goran Ivanisevic, Conchita Martinez among Hall of Fame nominees

Big-serving left-hander Goran Ivanisevic, a former Wimbledon champion who won two Olympic bronze medals, headlined the list of four candidates up for induction into the International Tennis Hall of Fame.

Spanish great Conchita Martinez, twice French Open winner Sergi Bruguera and doubles specialist Jonas Bjorkman were the other nominations announced on Wednesday.

Ivanisevic, who was known for his serve-and-volley style of play, was ranked 125th in 2001 when he was given a wildcard into that year’s Wimbledon.

The towering Croat made the most of his opportunity as he went on to knock out three players who were former or future world number ones, before he beat Australia’s Pat Rafter in a five-set battle in the final.

Ivanisevic, who remains the lowest-ranked player to win Wimbledon and the only male player to win a Grand Slam singles title as a wildcard, also collected a singles bronze and doubles bronze at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics.

Former world number two Martinez won 33 singles titles, including at Wimbledon in 1994 when she beat nine-time champion Martina Navratilova in the final.

Martinez, who spent 190 weeks ranked inside the world top five, also collected 13 doubles titles to go along with three Olympic medals in doubles, while also serving as a key member of five championship Fed Cup teams.

Spanish clay court great Bruguera won back-to-back titles at Roland Garros in 1993 and 1994, the first which came against two-time defending champion Jim Courier in the final after coming back from 2-0 down in the fifth set.

Swede Bjorkman won nine major titles and achieved a doubles career Grand Slam.

The Class of 2020 will be announced in January, with an induction ceremony scheduled for July 18 at the Newport, Rhode Island-based Hall of Fame.

Reuters