Classic Memphis Memory From Johan Kriek

Johan Kriek shared this awesome Memphis memory on Facebook. He has an endless supply of such memories and anecdotes. Should the former two-time Australian Open champ write a book or what?!

Kriek: I drove from Florida to Memphis to play in the 1982 U.S. National Indoor Championships in my red Porsche 911 – I love cars, especially Porsches and love to drive everywhere. I drove every summer since 1979 to all my summer events in Canada and the U.S. There’s no better way to see the country etc. From my house in Naples, at that time, to the Hyatt hotel was exactly 1000 miles! What are the chances of that happening!

I went all the way to the finals and had to face John McEnroe, then #1, on national TV. I had run out of clean clothes and had one red ELLESSE outfit left in my suitcase. I beat Johnny Mac 6-4 in the third, which for me was the final exclamation mark, that regardless what people said about my “nobody showed up at the Aussie Open”, I had beaten the best player indoors or on grass in the world to win a US national title.

I did it all in red, with a little red Porsche, on Valentine’s Day! It felt good…


  • Scoop Malinowski · February 18, 2013 at 2:42 pm

    I really really enjoy Kriek’s memories and perspectives on Facebook. Many friends are nudging him to pen a book, some even pre-ordering. It would really be an interesting book because Kriek played in that wonderful era and knows and played Agassi, Borg, Mac, Nasty, Jimbo, Mayotte, etc. How cool would it be to back and relive that era of tennis from the perspective of Johan Kriek?

  • Steve · February 19, 2013 at 11:13 am

    Great story! I enjoy these kinds of details which are sometimes lacking in tennis bios.

  • Scoop Malinowski · February 19, 2013 at 10:54 pm

    Agree Steve, it’s a pleasure to hear these old stories, times have changed so much, today’s players do not reveal very much outside of the basic technical tennis talk.



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