Angela Buxton, a British tennis player who paired with Althea Gibson when the American became the first black person to win a major tournament title in 1956, has died. He was 85 years old.
The International Tennis Federation announced on Monday the death of Buxton, whom it described as “a pioneer of fairness rights.”
Buxton and Gibson won doubles titles at the French Open and Wimbledon in 1956, and Buxton also reached the women’s singles final at the All England Club that year. Gibson lifted singles titles at the French Open in 1956, and Wimbledon and the US Open in 1957 and 1958.
Buxton was forced to retire at the end of the 1957 season, aged 22, with a serious hand injury.
Katrina Adams, a former tennis player who has been an advocate for fair rights in tennis, said Buxton “advocated for friendship and support for Althea Gibson when no one else would, in a racist era in our sport in the 1950s. ”.
Buxton had Jewish heritage and faced anti-Semitism throughout his career. She was one of the first to be inducted into the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame, in 1981, and was the author of several books on tennis. AP (HN)