Speakers Profile - Evonne Goolagong-Cawley

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Evonne Cawley is Australia's most loved women's tennis player and one of the country's most admired Aboriginal sportspeople. Among the list of historic firsts achieved by Evonne Cawley (nee Goolagong) perhaps the most remarkable is her victory over Chris Evert-Lloyd in 1980 which resulted in her becoming the first mother ever to win Wimbledon.

Significantly she was also the first Aborigine to succeed in tennis at an international level. At the age of ten Evonne Goolagong left her home town of Barellan and travelled to Sydney to live and train in Roseville with tennis coach Vic Edwards. Goolagong achieved success while still a teenager. She won no fewer than thirty-seven junior tennis titles and in 1970 won the Under-19 Australian Girls Singles.

The following year, while still only nineteen, she defeated fellow Australian Margaret Court 6-4, 6-1 to take the coveted Wimbledon title. She was the second youngest person to win the title. In the decade 1970-80 Evonne Goolagong-Cawley (she married Roger Cawley, in 1975) won a total of ninety-two major tennis tournaments including Wimbledon (twice), the Australian Open (four times), the French Open, the Italian Open and the New South Wales Open (four times).

Her particular talent for tennis is based on an extraordinary ability to make the game effortless and easy. She is regarded as a very natural player. At her peak she attained the No. 1 rank in the world. She became the fifth woman tennis player to earn over $1 million. Today, she and her husband, along with their children, live at Noosa Heads on Queensland's Sunshine Coast.