Maria Esther Andion Bueno (born 11 October 1939) is a former professional tennis player from Brazil. During her 11-year career in the 1950s and 1960s (plus a two-year comeback in 1976–77), she won 19 Major titles (seven singles, 11 women's doubles, one mixed doubles). She was the year-end number-one ranked female player four times and was known for her graceful style of play.

In 1960, Bueno became the first woman ever to win all four Grand Slam double titles in one year (three with Darlene Hard and one with Christine Truman).

Career

Bueno began playing tennis at a very young age at the Clube de Regatas Tiete in Sao Paulo and, without having received any formal training, won her first tournament at age 12.[6] She was 14 when she captured her country's women's singles championship.

She went abroad in 1957 at age 17 and won the Orange Bowl juniors tournament in Florida.[7] Joining the international circuit in 1958, Bueno won the singles title at the Italian Championships and the first of her Grand Slam titles, capturing the women's doubles at Wimbledon with Althea Gibson.

The following year, Bueno won her first singles title at Wimbledon, defeating Darlene Hard in the final. She also won the singles title at the U.S. Championships after a straights set victory in the final against Christine Truman, earning the World No. 1 ranking for 1959 and the Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year award.[9] Bueno was the first non-North-American woman to capture both Wimbledon and the U.S. Championships in the same calendar year. In her native Brazil, she returned as a national heroine, honored by the country's president and given a ticker-tape parade on the streets of São Paulo.[10]

According to Lance Tingay of the Daily Telegraph and the Daily Mail and Bud Collins, Bueno was ranked in the world top ten from 1958 through 1960 and from 1962 through 1968, reaching a career high of World No. 1 in those rankings in 1959 and 1960. The International Tennis Hall of Fame also lists her as the top ranked player in 1964 (after losing the final at the French Championships and winning both Wimbledon and the U.S. Championships) and 1966.

Bueno won the singles title at Wimbledon three times and at the U.S. Championships four times.[6] She was a singles finalist at the Australian Championships and the French Championships, losing both finals to Margaret Court. Bueno reached at least the quarterfinals in each of the first 26 Grand Slam singles tournaments she played. This streak ended at Wimbledon in 1967 when she lost in the fourth round because of an arm injury.

As a doubles player, Bueno won twelve Grand Slam championships with six different partners. In 1960, she became the first woman to win the women's doubles title at all four Grand Slam tournaments in the same calendar year, partnered by Christine Truman at the Australian Championships and Hard at the French Championships, Wimbledon, and the U.S. Championships.

In 1978, Bueno was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame.

At the 2006 US Open, Maria Bueno was invited to attend the rededication ceremony of the USTA National Tennis Center as the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, which took place on the first day of the event. Bueno and King were rivals in singles and, on occasion, doubles partners. According to Bueno, the only players invited were those who had won the US Open "more than twice" (she won it four times). At the same event, Bueno debuted as a commentator for SporTV, a Brazilian cable television sports channel. She commentated on the women's singles semifinals and final and the men's singles final as well as offering opinions during the live broadcast of the USTA's induction of Martina Navratilova and Don Budge in the "Court of Champions".

Grand Slam finals: 35 (19 titles, 16 runners-up)

Bueno won 19 and lost 16 of her Grand Slam finals. This represents a success rate of 54%.

Singles: 12 (7 titles, 5 runners-up)

OutcomeYearChampionshipSurfaceOpponentScore
Winner1959WimbledonGrass Darlene Hard6–4, 6–3
Winner1959U.S. ChampionshipsGrass Christine Truman6–1, 6–4
Winner1960Wimbledon (2)Grass Sandra Reynolds8–6, 6–0
Runner-up1960U.S. ChampionshipsGrass Darlene Hard6–4, 10–12, 6–4
Winner1963U.S. Championships (2)Grass Margaret Smith7–5, 6–4
Runner-up1964French ChampionshipsClay Margaret Smith5–7, 6–1, 6–2
Winner1964Wimbledon (3)Grass Margaret Smith6–4, 7–9, 6–3
Winner1964U.S. Championships (3)Grass Carole Caldwell Graebner6–1, 6–0
Runner-up1965Australian ChampionshipsGrass Margaret Smith5–7, 6–4, 5–2, retired
Runner-up1965WimbledonGrass Margaret Smith6–4, 7–5
Runner-up1966Wimbledon (2)Grass Billie Jean King6–3, 3–6, 6–1
Winner1966U.S. Championships (4)Grass Nancy Richey6–3, 6–1

Doubles: 16 (11 wins, 5 runners-up)

OutcomeYearChampionshipSurfacePartnerOpponentsScore
Winner1958WimbledonGrass Althea Gibson Margaret Osborne duPont
Margaret Varner Bloss
6–3, 7–5
Runner-up1958U.S. ChampionshipsGrass Althea Gibson Jeanne Arth
Darlene Hard
2–6, 6–3, 6–4
Runner-up1959U.S. Championships (2)Grass Sally Moore Jeanne Arth
Darlene Hard
6–2, 6–3
Winner1960Australian ChampionshipsGrass Christine Truman Lorraine Coghlan Robinson
Margaret Smith
6–2, 5–7, 6–2
Winner1960French ChampionshipsClay Darlene Hard Ann Haydon-Jones
Patricia Ward Hales
6–2, 7–5
Winner1960Wimbledon (2)Grass Darlene Hard Sandra Reynolds
Renee Schuurman
6–4, 6–0
Winner1960U.S. ChampionshipsGrass Darlene Hard Ann Haydon-Jones
Deidre Catt
6–1, 6–1
Runner-up1961French ChampionshipsClay Darlene Hard Sandra Reynolds
Renee Schuurman
walkover
Winner1962U.S. Championships (2)Grass Darlene Hard Billie Jean Moffitt
Karen Hantze Susman
4–6, 6–3, 6–2
Winner1963Wimbledon (3)Grass Darlene Hard Margaret Smith
Robyn Ebbern
8–6, 9–7
Runner-up1963U.S. Championships (3)Grass Darlene Hard Margaret Smith
Robyn Ebbern
4–6, 10–8, 6–3
Winner1965Wimbledon (4)Grass Billie Jean Moffitt Françoise Dürr
Janine Lieffrig
6–2, 7–5
Winner1966Wimbledon (5)Grass Nancy Richey Margaret Smith
Judy Tegart
6–3, 4–6, 6–4
Runner-up1967WimbledonGrass Nancy Richey Rosemary Casals
Billie Jean King
9–11, 6–4, 6–2
Winner1966U.S. Championships (3)Grass Nancy Richey Billie Jean King
Rosemary Casals
6–3, 6–4
Winner1968US Open (4)Grass Margaret Court Billie Jean King
Rosemary Casals
4–6, 9–7, 8–6

Mixed doubles: 7 (1 wins, 6 runners-up)

OutcomeYearChampionshipSurfacePartnerOpponentsScore
Runner-up1958U.S. ChampionshipsGrass Alex Olmedo Margaret Osborne duPont
Neale Fraser
6–3, 3–6, 9–7
Runner-up1959WimbledonGrass Neale Fraser Darlene Hard
Rod Laver
6–4, 6–3
Winner1960French ChampionshipsClay Bob Howe Ann Haydon-Jones
Roy Emerson
1–6, 6–1, 6–2
Runner-up1960Wimbledon (2)Grass Bob Howe Darlene Hard
Rod Laver
13–11, 3–6, 8–6
Runner-up1960U.S. Championships (2)Grass Antonio Palafox Margaret Osborne duPont
Neale Fraser
6–3, 6–2
Runner-up1965French ChampionshipsClay John Newcombe Margaret Smith
Ken Fletcher
6–4, 6–4
Runner-up1967Wimbledon (3)Grass Ken Fletcher Billie Jean King
Owen Davidson
3–6, 6–2, 15–13

Grand Slam singles tournament timeline

Key
W F SFQF#RRRQ#ANH
(W) Won; (F) finalist; (SF) semifinalist; (QF) quarterfinalist; (#R) rounds 4, 3, 2, 1; (RR) round-robin stage; (Q#) qualification round; (A) absent; (NH) not held.
Tournament195819591960196119621963196419651966196719681969–197519761977Career SR
AustraliaAAQFAAAAFAAAAAA / A0 / 2
FranceSFQFSFQFAAFSFSFQFQFA1RA0 / 10
WimbledonQFWWASFQFWFF4RQFA4R3R3 / 12
United StatesQFWFASFWWSFW2RSFA3R2R4 / 12
SR0 / 32 / 31 / 40 / 10 / 21 / 22 / 30 / 41 / 30 / 30 / 30 / 00 / 30 / 27 / 36

SR = the ratio of the number of Grand Slam singles tournaments won to the number of those tournaments played.

Note: The Australian Open was held twice in 1977, in January and December.

See also

Notes

  1. Bueno won the Italian Championships again in 1961 and 1965 to become the second three-time winner of the tournament.[8]