The Sportsman Award

When I think about my Dad and sportsmanship what comes to mind is his love for the game. He enjoyed tennis so much that he played competitively and socially until the day his body wouldn’t let him anymore. He always wanted to win, but showed the utmost respect for himself and his opponents, both on and off the court. I never saw him give anyone a harsh look or argue or make a questionable line call. He kept his composure whether he was winning or losing. I think this behavior came easily, because just being able to play was a win for him. He is no longer with us, but if I could ask him now about sportsmanship I think he would say that, on so many levels, it is a privilege to play tennis. His message would be: have fun, respect yourself, your opponent and the game and you will play your best tennis. And he would probably remind you to wear your sunscreen too!

Lydia Callaghan

*Michael had wins over Dick Stockton and led Rod “The Rocket” Laver 2 sets to love at the Australian Open in 1957.