Welby Van Horn

Welby Van Horn (born 1920) is a retired American professional tennis player who later went on to have a career as a major tennis coach.

As a 19-year-old player, Van Horn reached the finals of the 1939 U.S. Nationals only to lose to Bobby Riggs in just 56 minutes (6–4, 6–2, 6–4). One of the high points of his career was a crushing defeat (6–0, 6–2, 6–1) of the great Bill Tilden at a match between U.S. and British Empire service teams at Wimbledon in July, 1945, supposedly the worst drubbing of Tilden's careerTilden, however, was 52 years old at the time while Van Horn was 25. Van Horn also won the United States Pro Championship in 1945. He lived briefly in Atlanta, Ga., where he had been hired as Head Tennis Professional at the Piedmont Driving Club. In 1951, he moved to Puerto Rico as a coach at the Caribe Hilton Swim and Tennis Club, where he worked with many promising juniors, among them Manuel Diaz, later to become a star on the University of Georgia tennis team and UGA coach.

His career as a coach spawned institutions such as the Welby Van Horn Tennis Academy in Boca Raton, Florida, and Welby Van Horn Tennis programs in a number of locations.

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