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Alex Olmedo
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Tennis Player
    (March 24, 1936- )
    Born in Arequipa, Peru
    Birth name is Alejandro Olmedo Rodriguez
    Won two tennis Majors in 1959 (Australia and Wimbledon)
    Inducted into the Tennis Hall of Fame (1987)
    He was basically a one-hit wonder in pro tennis.
    His representing the U.S. in the Davis Cup was controversial because, while technically eligible due to having lived in the country for at least five years, he opted against American citizenship.
    He denied his refusal had anything to do with avoiding being drafted into the Army, and claimed he was merely content to stay a citizen of Peru (which didn't even have a tennis team).
    A New York Times sports columnist commented hyperbolically on the situation: 'This would seem to be the saddest day in the history of American tennis. A few more such rousing victories and the prestige of this country in tennis will sink to a new low.' (*koff* nativist *koff*)
    Sports Illustrated even acknowledged the controversy when they featured him on their September 1959 cover - including the caption 'The Enigma of Alex Olmedo' next to his picture.
    He is of part-Inca ancestry.
    He was initially barred from playing tennis in Lima due to his peasant background.
    He emigrated to California as a student and broke into tennis on a three-year residency.
    He almost single-handedly helped win the Davis Cup for the USA in 1958.
    He was the No. 2 ranked amateur tennis player, at only twenty three years-old, for 1959.
    He was greeted by a crowd of 20,000 at the Lima airport in the return following his win for the U.S., and another 10,000 in his Peruvian hometown.
    He retired and spent over 40 years teaching tennis at the Beverly Hills Hotel.
    His students included Katharine Hepburn, Chevy Chase, and Robert Duvall.

Credit: BoyWiththeGreenHair

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