DAVIS CUP MATCHES have been played in the Cleveland area 10 times in the history of the international tennis competition, and in 1964, it was the site of the first Davis Cup final played in the Midwest. In all, greater Cleveland has been the site of 6 preliminary rounds (1960, 1961, 1962, 1966, 1968, 1979) and 4 championship matches (1964, 1969, 1970, 1973). Robert S. Malaga, local attorney and former high school and collegiate tennis star, brought the first Davis Cup event to the CLEVELAND SKATING CLUB on 16-18 Sept. 1960, where the U.S. team defeated Venezuela in that American Zone final, 5-0. The 1961 and 1962 American Zone matches were also held here, with the U.S. team victorious in both. After hosting preliminary rounds of Davis Cup competition for 3 years, Cleveland was the site of its first championship Challenge Round in 1964 when Malaga guaranteed promoters $100,000 and a new tennis facility. The Davis Cup final was played at a new 7,500-seat tennis stadium at Roxboro School in CLEVELAND HTS., where the Australian team captured the cup on 28 Sept. 1964, defeating the U.S. 3-2. Arthur Ashe played on the team that year, the first black to do so. From 19-21 Sept. 1969, the Romainian team challenged the Americans for the cup at the HAROLD T. CLARK TENNIS COURTS in Cleveland Hts. but were shut out by the U.S., 5-0. The U.S. successfully defended the cup in late Aug. 1970 at the Cleveland Hts. site, shutting out the West German Team 5-0. When the Davis Cup final returned to Cleveland on 30 Nov. 1973, the match was held in Public Hall, where the Americans lost the cup to Australia, 5-0. The Cleveland Skating Club hosted the last Davis Cup event, the American Zone final, on 16-18 Mar. 1979, won by the U.S. over Colombia, 5-0.


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