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Goran Ivanišević becomes first Croatian inducted into International Tennis Hall of Fame

18 July 2021 – Goran Ivanišević became the first Croatian inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame on Saturday night in Newport. 

The former Wimbledon champ gave an emotional speech in front of guests, saying it was a proud moment in his life. 

“We are a small country with a huge heart. We never stop believing. I had a lot of ups and downs, and I never stopped believing. For the first time in my life, I can say I am proud of myself.”

Ivanišević, who won 22 tour-level trophies in his career which saw him reach No. 2 in the world, was also his typical self-deprecating self during his speech. 

“To the three Gorans, five Gorans, to every Goran in this world, you guys made me proud. We did it our different way, we did it our hard way, but we did it our way. But only I am going in. Guys, you can come and visit, but I am going in. I deserve it. “It was not easy to be my fan. It was frustrating, it was sad, probably a lot of people got divorced because of me. But one thing is for sure: it was entertaining to be my fan,” Ivanišević said.”

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Goran Ivanisevic (@goranivanisevicofficial)

He want on to thank the Wimbledon committee for giving him a wild card the year he finally won the tournament before thanking two special people in his life, his parents, Gorana and Srdjan.

“Mom and Dad, there are not enough thank yous, there are not enough words to say or do for everything that you did for me. If I had to go again on this trip, I’d choose you again to be my mom and dad and go together again. I love you, and thank you for everything.”

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Goran Ivanisevic (@goranivanisevicofficial)

Ivanišević was introduced last night by John McEnroe via a virtual message. 

“I love Goran Ivanišević, and I am absolutely thrilled to induct someone into the Hall of Fame who is arguably crazier on the court than I was,” McEnroe said, eliciting a fit of laughter from the crowd. “But here’s the truth: He’s been great for the sport of tennis, certainly has personality. Yes he’s a character, yes he had serious game. He’s lefty, I like that. He’s super-talented.”

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