Tennis great Jimmy Connors to write memoir

Mon Jun 20, 2011 1:42pm EDT
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NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) - A memoir by brash tennis player Jimmy Connors that promises to address his broken engagement to fellow tennis star Chris Evert as well as his rivalry with John McEnroe will be published in 2012, HarperCollins said on Monday.

The release of the autobiography by the man regarded as one of the greatest tennis players of all time will coincide with his 60th birthday and 30th anniversary of his last Wimbledon title, the publisher said.

"A lot has been written about me, my family, my on-court behavior and my off-court life," Connors said in a statement. "This book is going to change that. People may think they know Jimmy Connors. They don't, but they will after they have read my book."

Connors, 58, a former gritty left-hander with fiery on-court antics and a dominant two-handed backhand, won a record 109 titles including eight Grand Slams and was No. 1 in the ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals) rankings for 160 consecutive weeks from 1974-77 in a tennis career lasting more than two decades.

He also promised to address in the memoir his close but complicated relationship with his late mother Gloria, who was a teaching tennis pro who helped her son in the early years of his career.

(Reporting by Christine Kearney, editing by Patricia Reaney)

<p>Andy Roddick's coach Jimmy Connors sits in the crowd during the match between Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber and Andy Roddick of the U.S. at the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne January 18, 2008. REUTERS/Tim Wimborne</p>