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Overseas Champions

An Australian, Norman Brookes became the first player from abroad to lift the Wimbledon men's singles trophy in 1907. He was also the first left-handed player to do so. Brookes, who played golf and cricket, too beat Arthur Gore 6-4,6-4,6-2 in the all comers final.

A young American lady, May Sutton who played with rolled up sleeves and grunted with every shot like the modern day Monica Seles, won the championships in 1905 and 1907 and finished runners up in 1906.

The year the Prince of Wales attended the championships, and became its first President, both the titles went abroad.
Norman Brookes did not defend his title in 1908, and Arthur Gore who had last won the championship in 1901, took advantage of his absence to win the singles crown in 1908 and 1909. He was 41 when he won his third Wimbledon and thus became the oldest player to win the men's singles title.

Tony Wilding, a New Zealander with English parents won the men's singles titles from 1910 to 1913. He beat Arthur Gore in the final of 1910 and then had Roper Barrett retiring in the final of 1911, when he suffered from sunstroke, with the match evenly balanced at two sets all. He again beat Gore in the 1912 final. The 1913 final was a sell out because of the presence of the 'Californian Comet', Maurice McLoughlin who had a thunder ball service. But Wilding was equal to the occasion. He upset McLoughlin's rhythm, receiving his service from inside the baseline and attacking his poor backhand, thus beating him 8-6, 6-3, 10-8.

1913 marked another important landmark in sporting history. The challenge round tickets, for the first time, were sold in the black market at a premium of 10-Pound Sterling. The singles entries also reached a pre-World War I high of 116 that year.

The Last men's singles final before the war in 1914 was played between four-time winner Wilding of New Zealand and Australian, Norman Brookes, the 1907 champion. Brookes won easily because Wilding had not prepared himself physically and mentally for the tough grind. This was Wilding's last appearance at Wimbledon for he was killed in shellfire in Belgium during the World War.

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