Tennis Prose



Biofile with Andres Gomez

By Scoop Malinowski

Status: 1990 Roland Garros champion. Won 21 career ATP singles and 34 doubles titles. Won 1988 Roland Garros in doubles (w. E. Sanchez) and 1986 U.S. Open in doubles (w. Zivojinovic).

DOB: February 27, 1960 In: Guayaquil, Ecuador

Nickname: Go Go – from Jimmy Connors.

Tennis Inspirations: I think Nastase, Laver and Hoad.

Hobbies/Leisure Activities: Surfing, golfing and tennis.

Favorite Movie: Apocalypse Now.

Musical Tastes: Pink Floyd.

First Job: Was a tennis player.

First Car: Was a pick-up truck (white).

Early Tennis Memory: Watching Santana play when I was 12. Live. In my club in Guayaquil. It was a clinic that he did before the matches. He was very nice to all the kids there. I don’t remember exactly what he said but when somebody like that says something, it always sticks to you.

Favorite Meal: Ceviche – made out of seafood, could be either shrimp or fish or octopus.

Favorite Ice Cream Flavor: Pistachio.

Greatest Sports Moment: I think winning the French.

Most Painful Moment: Having to retire to Ivan Lendl in the quarterfinals of the Davis Cup in 1985 in Guayaquil, Ecuador against Czechoslovakia. 4-3 in the first set. I tore my hamstring.

Closest ATP Friends: Hans Gildemeister, Martin Jaite, Ricardo Ycaza, Raul Viver – my Davis Cup teammates.

Funniest Players Encountered: Nastase and Bahrami.

Funny Tennis Memory: With Ilie, playing doubles together in Rome in 1982. We were playing Tomas Smid and Pavel Slozil and Nastase keeps talking to them and making fun of them. And they were like a top five doubles team. And he was saying, You’re bad and he was like trying to make fun and get them out of their game. That’s when I really got to know Nastase. It was great for me because that was someone that I always followed and I ended up playing doubles with him. And I remember he was throwing saw dust into Smid’s and Slozil’s heads on the changeovers. And they knew him and they let it happen. 

Toughest Competitors Encountered: Lendl – because he beat me, not all the time but most of the time. He took me out eight times in Grand Slams and Masters. And Connors.

Favorite Players To Watch: I like to watch McEnroe. And now I like to watch Federer and Nadal.

Favorite Tournaments: French. And any tournament in New York. I love playing here in Flushing. I enjoyed playing at the Westside Tennis Club in Forest Hills. And I really loved playing in The Masters in Madison Square Garden. In the big tournaments. On the smaller tournaments I loved Barcelona and I liked the tournaments in Brazil.

Embarrassing Tennis Memory: 1981 playing Connors at the U.S. Open center court, Louis Armstrong at the time. It was packed. The referee called me that I was from Mexico. I refused to start the match until he called where I came from – Ecuador. And then right after he called that we started the match and on the first point Connors throws a high lob that lands like two feet from the net. For an easy put away. I came on and completely miss the ball – the sun got in my eyes and it was very embarrassing. We ended up playing four hours and 45 minutes. So I guess people forgot about that after a while. (Who won?) He did, 7-6 in the fifth.

Best You Ever Felt On Court: I say playing Muster in the semis of the French Open. The year I won in 1990. Because I beat him 1-5-1 (actually 5-1-5), so it was because I could not miss a ball and he was supposed to be the best player on the clay at the time. That one comes to mind. And then I played a couple of matches in Davis Cup. Playing Clerc in Argentina. I felt really good then. And we played four sets in like five hours and something. And playing Davis Cup against Argentina in Ecuador too. I always played well in Davis Cup. That’s when I felt the best on the court. Even if I didn’t play well, that was when I felt the best.

People Qualities Most Admired: I like to see people that are truthful, you can trust. And only one face – not they say something, they turn around and say something else. I guess it’s called sincere people.

Andres Gomez wins 1990 French Open

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  • Michael · June 5, 2011 at 5:06 am

    Scoop, do you remember maybe 10 years ago they set up a tennis court at Wolman Rink in Central Park and a lot of the ex-pros played ? That was the last time I saw Gomez. He beat Borg pretty easy in Central Park.

    Good not to see Shawshank Redemption show up !

  • Scoop Malinowski · June 5, 2011 at 1:39 pm

    No Michael, wasn’t really into tennis back then. That would have been a great day to get some tennis Biofiles. Gogo played Delray last year and was a bit out of shape.

  • Dan Markowitz · May 22, 2012 at 8:36 pm

    I remember that, in fact, I was there. I don’t think they played that event. And I was looking forward to it. It rained a lot and the court wasn’t set up right so it ruined it.

    Unfortunately, I saw Gomez play a couple of years ago in the Senior Event in Delray Beach and he was horrible. He’d put on a good deal of weight and Wilander was nice to him just to keep him in most points. But yes, Apocalypse Now is a heady answer.



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