Posted September 10, 2013 on AP on Fox

NEW YORK - AUGUST 31: Tennis player Billie Jean King attends the 9th Annual USTA Serves OPENing Gala at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on August 31, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images)
The gold paint on the winners' boards at the Ellis Park tennis stadium in Johannesburg sparkles with names of the greats: Rod Laver, Jimmy Connors, Margaret Court, Billie Jean King and many more. Yet an air of neglect cloaks the clubhouse, where dust coats the counter and booths in ''The Tennis Bar,'' its big window overlooking the old center court. Ellis Park, once the temple of South African tennis, hosted celebrity-studded stops on the international circuit, despite intensifying global protests aimed at isolating the white minority rulers of the time. In 1974, Connors triumphed at the U.S. Open and then beat Arthur Ashe in a South African final for the second consecutive year. Laver, who oversaw the coin toss before Rafael Nadal's victory over Novak Djokovic in New York on Monday, won in Johannesburg in 1969 and 1970. Roy Emerson, whose record of 12 major singles wins was overtaken by Nadal at Flushing Meadow, also collected the South African trophy. Now the 17-court complex a...
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