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Jean Borota
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Tennis Player
    (August 13, 1898-July 17, 1994)
    Born in Biarritz, France
    In singles, won two Wimbledons (1924,1926), one French Open (1931), and one Australian Open (1928)
    In doubles, won five French Opens (1925,1928-29,1935-36), three Wimbledons (1925,1932-33), and one Australian Open (1928)
    In mixed doubles, won two French Opens (1927,1934), one Wimbledon (1925), one US Open (1926), and one Australian Open (1925)
    Member of six Davis Cup winning teams (1927-32)
    Won a bronze medal in men's doubles at the 1924 Summer Olympics (1924)
    Inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame (1976)
    Nicknamed 'the bounding Basque'
    He wore berets during matches.
    He joined the collaborationist Vichy government as Commissioner for Education and Sports.
    After World War II, he served as chair of the Association for the Defense of Marshall Petain, an organization that whitewashed the human rights offenses of the Vichy regime.
    He was a crowd favorite, known for playing with energy and flair.
    When he tumbled into the stands chasing after a wide shot, he would kiss the hands of female spectators.
    He served in an infantry regiment during World War I and earned the Croix de Guerre.
    After Pierre Laval became head of the Vichy government, he was fired as Sports Commissioner for his 'intolerable attitude' -- fostering French nationalism through training demonstrations.
    He was imprisoned in solitary confinement at the Sachsenhausen concentration camp for six months, until King Gustav V of Sweden intervened on his behalf, resulting in his transfer to Itter Castle, where the Nazis housed prominent French political prisoners.
    In the waning days of World War II, he slipped out a castle window, passed through the German lines posing as a peasant, swam a river, contacted a group of US soldiers, and led them back to the castle to arrest the SS guards.

Credit: C. Fishel

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