Roscoe Tanner


Roscoe Tanner

Roscoe Tanner (born October 15, 1951) is a former professional American male tennis player and World No. 4 in 1979.

Early life

Leonard Roscoe Tanner was born in Chattanooga, graduated from Baylor School, and with Sandy Mayer helped to lead Stanford University's rise to the number 1 spot in collegiate tennis in 1973. Tanner played number one singles, with Mayer playing number two. The team also featured Rick Fisher, Stanley Pasarell, Jim Delaney, James "Chico" Hagey, Gery Groslimond, Pat DuPre, and Paul Sidone.

Playing history

Tanner is remembered for his devastating left-handed serve, his victory at the 1977 Australian Open (January) and 5-set loss to Björn Borg in the 1979 Wimbledon finals.

Of the winning 1973 Stanford tennis team, Tanner, Mayer and DuPre were all brothers in the Zeta Psi fraternity. Tanner defeated Haroon Rahim 10-8 in the 5th set to win the 1970 United States Amateur Championships (Men's Tennis).

Tanner is remembered for his dominating serve. Thrown very low and struck with a lunge involving the whole body, his first serve was among the fiercest on the circuit of his day, perhaps behind only that of Victor Amaya of Chile. During his loss to Borg in the 1979 Wimbledon championships he is credited with close to thirty aces. Though Borg defeated him at Wimbledon, several months later at the U.S. Open Tanner had his revenge, ousting Borg in the quarterfinal.

Grand Slam singles finals

Wins (1)

In 2005 he co-wrote his autobiography, "Double Fault: My Rise And Fall, And My Road Back".

Legal problems

In May 2008 Roscoe Tanner was arrested in Knoxville, Tennessee for the felony of writing $72,000 in worthless checks as "payment" for two Toyota Highlanders. The felony charge was dismissed on August 14, 2008 after the dealership obtained return of the vehicles, which were taken out of town, and upon Tanner's payment of $5000.00 in restitution to the dealership for the reduced value of the vehicles after their recovery. Several years before, Tanner was arrested in the Knoxville for violating probation resulting from his guilty pleas in Florida relating to felony worthless check and grand theft.

Tanner has an extensive record of conflicts with the law. He was arrested in Germany by Interpol on a felony fugitive warrant for skipping out on the above referenced felony charges filed against him in Florida. He pleaded guilty, received an initial probationary sentence, and after violating the terms of that probation, was sentenced to two years in the Florida Dept of Corrections. After serving one year of his sentence, he was released one year early for "good behavior."

Tanner has also been arrested and jailed in Georgia for Criminal Contempt of Court and refusal to pay child support, and arrested and jailed in New Jersey for the same charges.

In California, Tanner has been charged at least a dozen times for criminal contempt of court or refusal to pay child support or for failing or refusing to appear in court as ordered. He has been convicted of criminal contempt of court three times, and served at least one term of under 45 days in the Orange County Jail, and he is on probation until 2012. [http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/tennis/news/story?id=3416037]

Further reading


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