It is a record in men’s tennis at Wimbledon that has been standing since 1985, at the age of 17 years and 7 months Boris Becker became the youngest male player to win the Wimbledon title and the first unseeded champion in the mens draw.
1984 was a bit of a welcome to the tour for Boris, the German played 22 matches, he won 11 and lost 11 and finished his year ranked at 65 in the world. 1985 was more of a break out but he was still on 17 but he ended the year with 3 titles, 57 wins and 19 defeats.
Boris’ run to a Wimbledon title at 17 included…
R1 – 4-6 6-3 6-2 6-4 vs Pfister
R2 – 6-0 6-1 6-3 vs Anger
R3 – 3-6 7-6 6-1 4-6 9-7 vs Nystrum (7)
R4 – 6-3 4-6 6-7 7-6 6-2 vs Mayotte (16)
QF – 7-6 3-6 6-3 6-4 vs Leconte
SF – 2-6 7-6 6-3 6-3 vs Jarryd (5)
F – 6-3 6-7 7-6 6-4 vs Curren (8)
Three of the top ten seeds defeated, back to back five set battles and a semi-final from a set down and a tight tie-break.
It is one of the greatest runs to a Wimbledon title, regardless of what the other top players were and weren’t doing you have to win your matches and at the age of 17 to have done this was truly remarkable.
Boris brought a fun and expressive style to the biggest court in the world, he wasn’t afraid of anyone in his way and it is maybe a record we won’t see beaten.
Michael Chang became the youngest Grand Slam champion months later at Roland Garros but will anyone ever beat a record that has stood since 1985 at Wimbledon, will we see a younger Wimbledon champion?
What makes it even better is the next year he did it all again this time dropping just two sets over the duration of the tournament.