Tom Okker was born Thomas S. Okker on February 22, 1944. Known as the Flying Dutchman and Tom the Twitch, Okker ranked among the top 10 singles players in the world and reached a career high world number 3 in 1969. He also reached world number 1 in doubles in the same year.

Okker turned professional in 1968 although he was already the national champion in tennis four years before that. One of his first main victories was at the Italian Open. He reached the quarterfinals in Wimbledon in 1968 and later reached the semifinals ten years later. It was also in 1968 when Okker scored his best result in a Grand Slam when he faced Arthur Ashe in the final of the US Open, losing to Ashe with a sore of 14–12, 5–7, 6–3, 3–6, 6–3.

Born 22 Feb 1944
Nationality Netherlands Netherlands
Nickname The Flying Dutchman

The Dutchman won the 1970 German Open and the Belgian Open, and followed this up with a win in the 1973 Dewar Cup before he won the 1974 WCT Rothmans. He also represented the Netherlands in the Davis Cup from 1964 to 1981. Okker also played in the Maccabiah Games in Israel and brought home the titles for singles and mixed doubles in 1965.

His career records of 31 singles titles won is the 20th all time career record for singles, a record unbeaten until now. He was also the runner-up in a total of 24 singles tournaments. However, he also enjoyed immense success in his doubles career. Okker won two titles in Grand Slam doubles, the first in the 1973 French Open with John NewCombe and the second in 1976 at the the US Open with Marty Riessen. Okker has won a total of 87 doubles events, a record broken only by Todd Woodbridge in 2005. For his efforts the Tom the Twitch is one of the first professional players to win at least $1 million in career prize money.

User Comments

0 comments
Reply to