Zina Garrison

Zina Lynna Garrison (born November 16, 1963) is a former top five professional tennis player from the United States. She was the women's singles runner-up at Wimbledon in 1990, a three-time Grand Slam mixed doubles champion, and a women's doubles gold medalist and singles bronze medalist in Seoul at the 1988 Olympic Games.

Zina Garrison
Garrison in 2001
Country (sports) United States
ResidenceHouston, Texas
Born (1963-11-16) November 16, 1963
Houston, Texas
Height1.64 m (5 ft 5 in)
Turned pro1982
Retired1997
PlaysRight-handed (one handed-backhand)
Prize money$4,590,816
Singles
Career record587–270 (68.49%)
Career titles14
Highest rankingNo. 4 (November 20, 1989)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian OpenSF (1983)
French OpenQF (1982)
WimbledonF (1990)
US OpenSF (1988, 1989)
Doubles
Career record436–231 (65.37%)
Career titles20
Highest rankingNo. 5 (May 23, 1988)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian OpenF (1987, 1992)
French OpenQF (1988, 1989, 1991, 1995)
WimbledonSF (1988, 1990, 1991, 1993)
US OpenSF (1985, 1991)
Mixed doubles
Career titles3
Grand Slam Mixed Doubles results
Australian OpenW (1987)
French OpenSF (1989)
WimbledonW (1988, 1990)
US OpenSF (1987)
Team competitions
Fed CupW (1989, 1990)
Hopman CupF (1991)
Medal record
Women's tennis
Representing the  United States
Olympic Games
1988 Seoul Women's doubles
1988 Seoul Women's singles

Career

The youngest of seven children, Garrison started playing tennis at the age of 10 and entered her first tournament at the age of 12. At 14, she won the national girls' 18s title. In 1981, she won both the Wimbledon and US Open junior titles and was ranked the world No. 1 junior player. Garrison graduated from Sterling High School in Houston, Texas in 1982.[1]

Garrison began suffering from the eating disorder bulimia when she was 19, following the death of her mother.[1] "I had never been comfortable with my looks and felt I had lost the only person who loved me unconditionally", Garrison told the Observer Sport Monthly in 2006. "The pressure of being labeled 'the next Althea Gibson' only made things worse. I felt I was never going to be allowed to grow into just becoming me."[2]

Garrison turned professional in 1982, and skipped her graduation at Ross Sterling High School to compete in the French Open, her first tournament as a professional, where she reached the quarterfinals. She was awarded the WTA Newcomer of the Year in 1982.

Despite battling bulimia during her first few years on the tour, Garrison enjoyed notable success on-court. She reached the Australian Open semifinals in 1983, her first full year on the tour, and finished the year ranked world No. 10. She won her first top-level singles titles in 1984 at the European Indoor Championships in Zürich. In 1985, Garrison beat world no. 3 Hana Mandlíková and world no. 2 Chris Evert on her way to winning the Amelia Island Championships. She was also a Wimbledon semifinalist in 1985, and in 1986, she won her first tour doubles at the Canadian Open (partnering Gabriela Sabatini).

At the Australian Open in 1987, Garrison won the mixed doubles (partnering Sherwood Stewart) and finished runner-up in the women's doubles (partnering Lori McNeil). A year later, Garrison and Stewart captured the mixed doubles title at Wimbledon.

At the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, Garrison teamed with Pam Shriver to win the women's doubles gold medal for the United States, defeating Jana Novotná and Helena Suková of Czechoslovakia in the final. Garrison defeated Shriver in the quarterfinals of the singles event, where she won a bronze medal.[3] At the US Open, she defeated defending champion Navratilova for the first time in her career, advancing to the semifinals, where she lost to Sabatini.

In 1989, Garrison defeated Chris Evert 7–6, 6–2 in the quarterfinals of the US Open in Evert's final tournament. Garrison lost to Navratilova in the semifinals. She finished 1989 ranked a career-high world No. 4 in singles.

The highlight of Garrison's career came in 1990 at Wimbledon, as she defeated Samantha Smith, Cecilia Dahlman, Andrea Leand, Helena Suková, then French Open champion Monica Seles in the quarterfinals 3–6, 6–3, 9–7, and defending Wimbledon champion and world No. 1 Steffi Graf in the semifinals 6–3, 3–6, 6–4 to reach her only Grand Slam singles final, becoming the first African-American woman to do so since Gibson. Moreover, it ended Graf's record 13-time streak of Grand Slam finals. Then, she lost to Navratilova 6–4, 6–1, who thus won her record ninth women's singles title at Wimbledon. Garrison claimed her third mixed doubles title at Wimbledon that year (partnering Rick Leach).

In 1992, Garrison finished runner-up in the Australian Open women's doubles (partnering Mary Joe Fernandez).

At Wimbledon in 1994, Garrison beat world no. 2 Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario on the way to her 15th and final Grand Slam quarterfinal appearance.

Garrison retired from professional tennis in 1996. From 1982 to 1995, she remained uninterrupted in the world's top 25. During her career, she won 14 top-level singles titles and 20 doubles titles.

Personal life and post-tennis career

Garrison married Willard Jackson in September 1989; however, the marriage ended in divorce in 1997.

Since retiring from the tour, Garrison has worked as a television commentator and maintained active roles in the community and in tennis. She founded the Zina Garrison Foundation for the Homeless in 1988, and the Zina Garrison All-Court Tennis Program, which supports inner-city tennis in Houston, in 1992. She has also served as a member of the United States President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority.

Garrison has maintained a presence on the professional tennis scene, and was the captain for the U.S. Federation Cup (later Fed Cup) team. Garrison also led the U.S. women's team at the 2008 Beijing Games tennis event where team members Venus and Serena Williams won a gold medal in doubles.[4]

After "piling on weight" in her 40s, Garrison participated in season 16 of the reality TV competition The Biggest Loser, titled The Biggest Loser: Glory Days, which premiered September 11, 2014 on NBC. Despite losing 8 lbs., she was the first person eliminated from the program.[5]

Playing style

Garrison played an attacking style. It was common for her to slice her backhand and attack the net (a chip-and-charge tactic). Garrison had excellent volleys and overheads. She was able to rally when she wanted to but her main game plan was to get to the net so she could finish with the volley.

Major finals

Singles: 1 (1 runner–up)

Outcome Year Championship Surface Opponent Score
Runner-up1990WimbledonGrass Martina Navratilova6–4, 6–1

Doubles: 2 (2 runner-ups)

Outcome Year Championship Surface Partner Opponents Score
Runner-up1987Australian OpenGrass Lori McNeil Martina Navratilova
Pam Shriver
6–1, 6–0
Runner-up1992Australian OpenHard Mary Joe Fernández Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
Helena Suková
6–4, 7–6(7–3)

Mixed doubles: 6 (3 titles, 3 runner-ups)

Outcome Year Championship Surface Partner Opponents Score
Winner1987Australian OpenGrass Sherwood Stewart Anne Hobbs
Andrew Castle
3–6, 7–6(7–5), 6–3
Winner1988WimbledonGrass Sherwood Stewart Gretchen Magers
Kelly Jones
6–1, 7–6(7–3)
Runner-up1989Australian OpenHard Sherwood Stewart Jana Novotná
Jim Pugh
6–3, 6–4
Runner-up1990Australian OpenHard Jim Pugh Natasha Zvereva
Andrew Castle
4–6, 6–2, 6–3
Winner1990Wimbledon (2)Grass Rick Leach Elizabeth Smylie
John Fitzgerald
7–5, 6–2
Runner-up1993Australian OpenHard Rick Leach Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
Todd Woodbridge
7–5, 6–4

Singles: 1 bronze medal

Outcome Year Location Surface Opponent Score
Bronze1988SeoulHardTiedDNP

Garrison lost in the semifinals to Steffi Graf 2–6, 0–6. In 1988, there was no bronze medal play-off match, both beaten semifinal players received bronze medals.

Doubles: 1 gold medal

Outcome Year Location Surface Partner Opponents Score
Gold1988SeoulHard Pam Shriver Jana Novotná
Helena Suková
4–6, 6–2, 10–8

WTA career finals

Singles: 36 (14–22)

Winner — Legend
Grand Slam tournaments (0–1)
WTA Tour Championships (0–0)
Tier I (0–0)
Tier II (0–8)
Tier III (5–2)
Tier IV (3–2)
Tier V (0–2)
Virginia Slims (6–7)
Finals by surface
Hard (3–6)
Grass (4–4)
Clay (1–3)
Carpet (6–9)
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Runner-up 1. August 1, 1983 Indianapolis Clay Andrea Temesvári 2–6, 2–6
Runner-up 2. January 2, 1984 Washington Carpet (i) Hana Mandlíková 1–6, 1–6
Runner-up 3. September 24, 1984 New Orleans Carpet (i) Martina Navratilova 4–6, 3–6
Winner 1. October 29, 1984 Zürich Carpet (i) Claudia Kohde-Kilsch 6–1, 0–6, 6–2
Runner-up 4. January 14, 1985 Denver Carpet (i) Peanut Louie 4–6, 6–4, 4–6
Winner 2. April 15, 1985 Amelia Island Clay Chris Evert-Lloyd 6–4, 6–3
Runner-up 5. July 22, 1985 Indianapolis Clay Andrea Temesvári 6–7(0–7), 3–6
Winner 3. October 28, 1985 Zürich Carpet (i) Hana Mandlíková 6–1, 6–3
Runner-up 6. September 15, 1986 Tampa Hard Lori McNeil 6–2, 5–7, 2–6
Winner 4. October 27, 1986 Indianapolis Hard (i) Melissa Gurney 6–3, 6–3
Winner 5. January 5, 1987 Sydney Grass Pam Shriver 6–2, 6–4
Winner 6. February 9, 1987 San Francisco Carpet (i) Sylvia Hanika 7–5, 4–6, 6–3
Runner-up 7. August 17, 1987 Toronto Hard Pam Shriver 4–6, 1–6
Runner-up 8. October 24, 1988 Indianapolis Hard (i) Katerina Maleeva 3–6, 6–2, 2–6
Runner-up 9. February 13, 1989 Washington Carpet (i) Steffi Graf 1–6, 5–7
Winner 7. February 20, 1989 Oakland Carpet (i) Larisa Savchenko 6–1, 6–1
Runner-up 10. June 12, 1989 Birmingham Grass Martina Navratilova 6–7(5–7), 3–6
Winner 8. July 17, 1989 Newport Grass Pam Shriver 6–0, 6–1
Runner-up 11. July 31, 1989 San Diego Hard Steffi Graf 4–6, 5–7
Runner-up 12. October 30, 1989 Worcester Carpet (i) Martina Navratilova 2–6, 3–6
Winner 9. November 6, 1989 Chicago Carpet (i) Larisa Savchenko 6–3, 2–6, 6–4
Runner-up 13. February 19, 1990 Washington Carpet (i) Martina Navratilova 1–6, 0–6
Winner 10. June 11, 1990 Birmingham Grass Helena Suková 6–4, 6–1
Runner-up 14. June 25, 1990 Wimbledon Grass Martina Navratilova 4–6, 1–6
Runner-up 15. October 22, 1990 Dorado Hard Jennifer Capriati 7–5, 4–6, 2–6
Runner-up 16. February 11, 1991 Chicago Carpet (i) Martina Navratilova 1–6, 2–6
Runner-up 17. October 22, 1991 Brighton Carpet (i) Steffi Graf 7–5, 4–6, 1–6
Winner 11. February 17, 1992 Oklahoma City Hard (i) Lori McNeil 7–5, 3–6, 7–6(12–10)
Runner-up 18. April 13, 1992 Houston Clay Monica Seles 1–6, 1–6
Winner 12. February 15, 1993 Oklahoma City Hard (i) Patty Fendick 6–2, 6–2
Runner-up 19. June 7, 1993 Birmingham Grass Lori McNeil 4–6, 6–2, 3–6
Runner-up 20. July 26, 1993 Stratton Mountain Hard Conchita Martínez 3–6, 2–6
Winner 13. October 18, 1993 Budapest Carpet (i) Sabine Appelmans 7–5, 6–2
Runner-up 21. November 1, 1993 Oakland Carpet (i) Martina Navratilova 2–6, 6–7(1–7)
Runner-up 22. June 6, 1994 Birmingham Grass Lori McNeil 2–6, 2–6
Winner 14. June 12, 1995 Birmingham Grass Lori McNeil 6–3, 6–3

Doubles: 46 (20–26)

Winner — Legend
Grand Slam tournaments (0–2)
Tour Championships (0–0)
Olympic Games (1–0)
Tier I (2–2)
Tier II (6–11)
Tier III (6–2)
Tier IV (0–0)
Tier V (0–1)
Virginia Slims (5–8)
Finals by surface
Hard (8–7)
Grass (2–3)
Clay (3–5)
Carpet (7–11)
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponents Score
Winner 1. August 4, 1986 Montreal Hard Gabriela Sabatini Pam Shriver
Helena Suková
7–6(7–2), 5–7, 6–4
Runner-up 1. October 13, 1986 Filderstadt Carpet (i) Gabriela Sabatini Martina Navratilova
Pam Shriver
6–7(5–7), 4–6
Winner 2. October 27, 1986 Indianapolis Hard (i) Lori McNeil Candy Reynolds
Anne Smith
4–5 ret.
Runner-up 2. January 12, 1987 Australian Open Grass Lori McNeil Martina Navratilova
Pam Shriver
1–6, 0–6
Runner-up 3. February 9, 1987 San Francisco Carpet (i) Gabriela Sabatini Hana Mandlíková
Wendy Turnbull
4–6, 6–7(4–7)
Runner-up 4. March 23, 1987 Washington Carpet (i) Lori McNeil Elise Burgin
Pam Shriver
1–6, 6–3, 4–6
Runner-up 5. April 6, 1987 Hilton Head Island Clay Lori McNeil Mercedes Paz
Eva Pfaff
6–7(6–8), 5–7
Runner-up 6. April 20, 1987 Houston Clay Lori McNeil Kathy Jordan
Martina Navratilova
2–6, 4–6
Runner-up 7. August 10, 1987 Los Angeles Hard Lori McNeil Martina Navratilova
Pam Shriver
3–6, 4–6
Winner 3. August 17, 1987 Toronto Hard Lori McNeil Claudia Kohde-Kilsch
Helena Suková
6–1, 6–2
Winner 4. September 28, 1987 New Orleans Carpet (i) Lori McNeil Peanut Louie Harper
Heather Ludloff
6–3, 6–4
Runner-up 8. October 12, 1987 Filderstadt Carpet (i) Lori McNeil Martina Navratilova
Pam Shriver
1–6, 2–6
Runner-up 9. November 9, 1987 Chicago Carpet (i) Lori McNeil Claudia Kohde-Kilsch
Helena Suková
4–6, 3–6
Runner-up 10. February 8, 1988 Dallas Carpet (i) Gigi Fernández Lori McNeil
Eva Pfaff
6–2, 4–6, 5–7
Winner 5. March 7, 1988 Boca Raton Hard Katrina Adams Claudia Kohde-Kilsch
Helena Suková
4–6, 5–7, 6–4
Runner-up 11. March 14, 1988 Key Biscayne Hard Gigi Fernández Steffi Graf
Gabriela Sabatini
6–7(3–7), 3–6
Winner 6. April 11, 1988 Amelia Island Clay Eva Pfaff Katrina Adams
Penny Barg
4–6, 6–2, 7–6(7–5)
Winner 7. April 18, 1988 Houston Clay Katrina Adams Lori McNeil
Martina Navratilova
6–7(4–7), 6–2, 6–4
Runner-up 12. August 15, 1988 Montreal Hard Pam Shriver Jana Novotná
Helena Suková
6–7(2–7), 6–7(6–8)
Winner 8. September 19, 1988 Seoul Hard Pam Shriver Jana Novotná
Helena Suková
4–6, 6–2, 10–8
Runner-up 13. October 24, 1988 Indianapolis Hard (i) Katrina Adams Larisa Savchenko
Natalia Zvereva
2–6, 1–6
Winner 9. November 25, 1988 Tokyo Carpet (i) Katrina Adams Gigi Fernández
Robin White
7–5, 7–5
Winner 10. January 31, 1989 Tokyo Carpet (i) Katrina Adams Mary Joe Fernández
Claudia Kohde-Kilsch
6–3, 6–3, 7–6(7–5)
Winner 11. April 24, 1989 Houston Clay Katrina Adams Gigi Fernández
Lori McNeil
6–3, 6–4
Winner 12. June 19, 1989 Eastbourne Grass Katrina Adams Jana Novotná
Helena Suková
6–3, ret.
Winner 13. February 19, 1990 Washington Carpet (i) Martina Navratilova Ann Henricksson
Dinky Van Rensburg
6–0, 6–3
Runner-up 14. June 18, 1990 Eastbourne Grass Patty Fendick Larisa Savchenko-Neiland
Natalia Zvereva
4–6, 3–6
Winner 14. August 6, 1990 San Diego Hard Patty Fendick Elise Burgin
Rosalyn Fairbank-Nideffer
6–4, 7–6(7–5)
Winner 15. October 15, 1990 Filderstadt Carpet (i) Mary Joe Fernández Mercedes Paz
Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
7–5, 6–3
Winner 16. March 15, 1991 Key Biscayne Hard Mary Joe Fernández Gigi Fernández
Jana Novotná
7–5, 6–2
Runner-up 15. October 7, 1991 Zürich Carpet (i) Lori McNeil Jana Novotná
Andrea Strnadová
4–6, 3–6
Runner-up 16. October 22, 1991 Brighton Carpet (i) Lori McNeil Pam Shriver
Natasha Zvereva
1–6, 2–6
Runner-up 17. November 11, 1991 Philadelphia Carpet (i) Mary Joe Fernández Jana Novotná
Larisa Savchenko-Neiland
2–6, 4–6
Runner-up 18. January 6, 1992 Sydney Hard Mary Joe Fernández Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
Helena Suková
6–7(4–7), 7–6(7–4), 2–6
Runner-up 19. January 13, 1992 Australian Open Hard Mary Joe Fernández Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
Helena Suková
4–6, 6–7(3–7)
Runner-up 20. February 10, 1992 Chicago Carpet (i) Katrina Adams Martina Navratilova
Pam Shriver
4–6, 6–7(7–9)
Runner-up 21. April 6, 1992 Amelia Island Clay Jana Novotná Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
Natasha Zvereva
1–6, 0–6
Runner-up 22. June 15, 1992 Eastbourne Grass Mary Joe Fernández Jana Novotná
Larisa Savchenko-Neiland
0–6, 3–6
Runner-up 23. August 10, 1992 Los Angeles Hard Pam Shriver Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
Helena Suková
4–6, 2–6
Winner 17. February 8, 1993 Chicago Carpet (i) Katrina Adams Amy Frazier
Kimberly Po
7–6(7–3), 6–3
Winner 18. February 15, 1993 Oklahoma City Hard (i) Patty Fendick Katrina Adams
Manon Bollegraf
6–3, 6–2
Runner-up 24. May 3, 1993 Rome Clay Mary Joe Fernández Jana Novotná
Arantxa Sánchez Vicario
4–6, 2–6
Winner 19. October 4, 1993 Zürich Carpet (i) Martina Navratilova Gigi Fernández
Natasha Zvereva
6–3, 5–7, 6–3
Runner-up 25. March 21, 1994 Houston Clay Katrina Adams Manon Bollegraf
Martina Navratilova
4–6, 2–6
Winner 20. June 6, 1994 Birmingham Grass Larisa Savchenko-Neiland Catherine Barclay
Kerry-Anne Guse
6–4, 6–4
Runner-up 26. October 30, 1995 Oakland Carpet (i) Katrina Adams Lori McNeil
Helena Suková
6–3, 4–6, 3–6

Grand Slam performance timelines

Key
W  F  SF QF #R RR Q# A NH
(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. SR=strike rate (events won/competed)

Singles

Tournament19801981198219831984198519861987198819891990199119921993199419951996Career SR
Australian Open A A 1R SF 1R QF NH QF 2R QF QF 4R 4R 3R 1R 3R A 0 / 13
French Open A A QF 1R 4R 2R 3R A 4R 3R 1R 1R A 1R 1R 1R A 0 / 12
Wimbledon A A 4R 1R 2R SF 2R A QF 2R F QF 4R 4R QF 3R A 0 / 13
US Open 2R 1R 4R 4R 3R QF 4R 4R SF SF QF 4R 4R 3R 4R 4R 1R 0 / 17
SR 0 / 1 0 / 1 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 3 0 / 2 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 3 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 1 0 / 55
Year-end ranking NR NR 16 10 9 8 11 9 9 4 8 12 18 14 24 22 255

Doubles

Tournament19811982198319841985198619871988198919901991199219931994199519961997Career SR
Australian Open A 1R 2R QF QF NH F SF 3R 1R 2R F QF QF 1R A A 0 / 13
French Open A 2R 1R 1R 1R 1R A QF QF 1R QF 1R 3R 3R QF A A 0 / 13
Wimbledon A 1R 2R 2R 2R 3R A SF QF SF SF QF SF 1R 3R A A 0 / 13
US Open 2R 1R 3R 1R SF QF QF 2R 3R 3R SF QF A A 3R 1R 1R 0 / 15
SR 0 / 1 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 3 0 / 2 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 3 0 / 3 0 / 4 0 / 1 0 / 1 0 / 54
Year-end ranking 40 44 18 7 7 9 13 12 10 13 21 27 90 NR

Mixed doubles

Tournament198219831984198519861987198819891990199119921993199419951996Career SR
Australian Open NH NH NH NH NH W 1R F F 1R A F 1R A A 1 / 7
French Open A QF A 3R A A 2R SF 2R 3R A 2R 2R 3R A 0 / 9
Wimbledon A QF 1R 2R 1R A W 3R W 2R 2R 3R 1R A A 2 / 11
US Open QF 2R A QF 2R SF QF QF QF 1R QF 1R 2R A 1R 0 / 13
SR 0 / 1 0 / 3 0 / 1 0 / 3 0 / 2 1 / 2 1 / 4 0 / 4 1 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 2 0 / 4 0 / 4 0 / 1 0 / 1 3 / 40
  • SR = the ratio of the number of Grand Slam singles tournaments won to the number of those tournaments played.

References

  1. ESPN Classic – Garrison's biggest rally came off the court at espn.go.com (retrieved 2009-04-13)
  2. Honeyball, Lee (2006-05-07). "'Bulimia crushes your self-esteem. It took me five years to get help'". The Observer. Retrieved 2018-02-05.
  3. Zina Garrison. sports-reference.com
  4. "Harmon and Garrison to coach US teams in Beijing". 2008-03-19. Retrieved 2008-03-24.
  5. "The Biggest Loser" Season 16: Zina Garrison. LA Times

Bibliography

  • A. P. Porter, Zina Garrison: Ace, First Ave. Editions, 1992
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