Chris Lewis (tennis)

Chris Lewis (born 9 March 1957) is a former professional tennis player from New Zealand who reached the 1983 Wimbledon final as an unseeded player. He won three singles titles and achieved a career-high singles ranking of World No. 19 in April 1984. He also won 8 doubles titles during his 12 years on the tour. During his career Lewis was coached by Harry Hopman and Tony Roche.

Lewis became the third player from New Zealand to reach the finals of a Grand Slam singles title after the second player from New Zealand, Onny Parun, had reached the finals of a Grand Slam singles title 10 years before at the Australian Open. Lewis is the last player from New Zealand to reach the finals of a Grand Slam title as of 2017.

Chris Lewis
Chris Lewis, New Zealand Tennis Player (February 1980) (24874283479)
Country (sports)  New Zealand
Residence Irvine, California, United States
Born 9 March 1957 (age 61)
Auckland, New Zealand
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)[1]
Turned pro 1975
Retired 1986
Plays Right-handed (one-handed backhand)
Prize money $647,550
Career record 241–197
Career titles 3
Highest ranking No. 19 (16 April 1984)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open 3R (1977Dec, 1981)
French Open 3R (1977)
Wimbledon F (1983)
US Open 3R (1982)
Career record 183–161
Career titles 8[1]
Highest ranking No. 46 (14 January 1985)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open QF (1980)
French Open QF (1982)
Wimbledon QF (1981)
US Open 2R (1981)
Last updated on: 23 May 2012.

Early life

Lewis was born in Auckland, New Zealand, and received his secondary education at Marcellin College and Lynfield College. He is the eldest of three sons. His brothers are David Lewis and Mark Lewis who also had significant competitive tennis careers.[2]

Tennis career


Lewis reached the No. 1 junior world ranking in 1975, winning the Wimbledon Boys' Singles title (def. Ricardo Ycaza) and reaching the final of the US Open Boys' Singles (lost to Howard Schoenfield).

Pro tour

In reaching the 1983 Wimbledon finals, after a five-set win over Kevin Curren in the semi-finals, Lewis became the seventh unseeded man and only the second New Zealander after Anthony Wilding (who won four times between 1910 and 1913) to reach a Wimbledon singles final. He lost the final to John McEnroe (2–6, 2–6, 2–6). He also reached the finals at the Cincinnati Masters in 1981, again losing to John McEnroe (3–6, 4–6).

After tennis

In the 1999 New Zealand general election, Lewis unsuccessfully stood for parliament as a list candidate for the Libertarianz party. Now resident in Irvine, California, Lewis is the co-founder of the Brymer Lewis Tennis Academy, which is based at the Orange County Great Park Sports Complex in Irvine. His daughter, Geneva Lewis, born 1998, is a successful violinist.[3]


Lewis was the first man in history to reach the final of one of the four tennis majors (Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon, US Open) while using an oversize racquet, a Prince original graphite (Second only to Pam Shriver in the 1978 US Open). He was also one of the first players equipped with custom made shoes designed for the grass surface.

Career finals

Grand Slam singles finals

Outcome Year Championship Surface Opponent Score
Runner-up 1983 Wimbledon Grass United States John McEnroe 2–6, 2–6, 2–6

ATP World Tour Masters 1000 finals

Outcome Year Championship Surface Opponent Score
Runner-up 1981 Cincinnati Masters Hard United States John McEnroe 3–6, 4–6

Singles: 10 (3 titles – 7 runners-up)

Winner – Legend (pre/post 2009)
Grand Slam tournaments (0–1)
Tennis Masters Cup /
ATP World Tour Finals (0–0)
ATP Masters Series /
ATP World Tour Masters 1000 (0–1)
ATP International Series Gold /
ATP World Tour 500 Series (0–1)
ATP International Series /
ATP World Tour 250 Series (3–4)
Titles by Surface
Hard (1–2)
Clay (2–1)
Grass (0–4)
Carpet (0–0)
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Runner-up 1. 12 December 1977 Adelaide, Australia Grass United States Tim Gullikson 6–3, 4–6, 6–3, 2–6, 4–6
Winner 1. 30 July 1978 Kitzbühel, Austria Clay Czechoslovakia Vladimir Zednik 6–1, 6–4, 6–0
Runner-up 2. 23 March 1981 Stuttgart Indoor, Germany Hard (I) Czechoslovakia Ivan Lendl 3–6, 0–6, 7–6, 3–6
Winner 2. 18 May 1981 Munich, Germany Clay France Christophe Roger-Vasselin 4–6, 6–2, 2–6, 6–1, 6–1
Runner-up 3. 17 August 1981 Cincinnati, Ohio, United States Hard United States John McEnroe 3–6, 4–6
Runner-up 4. 5 October 1981 Brisbane, Australia Grass Australia Mark Edmondson 6–7, 6–3, 4–6
Runner-up 5. 14 December 1981 Sydney Outdoor, Australia Grass United States Tim Wilkison 4–6, 6–7, 3–6
Runner-up 6. 27 April 1982 Hilton Head WCT, South Carolina, United States Clay United States Van Winitsky 4–6, 4–6
Runner-up 7. 20 June 1983 Wimbledon, London Grass United States John McEnroe 2–6, 2–6, 2–6
Winner 3. 7 January 1985 Auckland, New Zealand Hard Australia Wally Masur 7–5, 6–0, 2–6, 6–4


  1. ^ a b Player Profile
  2. ^ Joseph Romanos, Chris Lewis: All the Way to Wimbledon, Rugby Press, Auckland, 1984, p. 43, ISBN 090863014X.
  3. ^ Thomas, Robert D. (16 March 2015). "16-year-old violinist to perform with Pasadena Symphony". The Pasadena Star-News. Retrieved 25 July 2015.

External links

Preceded by
1982 New Zealand men's eight
New Zealand Sportsman of the Year
Succeeded by
Ian Ferguson

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