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Longwood Cricket Club is a vibrant community centered around 25 grass and 19 clay tennis courts in a beautiful pastoral setting. Our 700+ members range from young families to very experienced seniors, from eager beginners to nationally-ranked amateurs. They enjoy a host of social and competitive tennis opportunities, as well as dining and poolside activities, supported by talented tennis, grounds and house staff. Whether on the courts, or on our beloved porch overlooking our beautiful grass courts, camaraderie and sportsmanship carry the day.

As one of the world’s oldest tennis clubs, the Longwood Cricket Club began its transition from the sport of cricket to tennis when the club added its first lawn tennis court in 1878. Since that time, Longwood has played an important role in the growth of tennis both through hosting national and international tournaments and through the prominence of its players and leaders. Early Longwood members who were tennis pioneers included R. D. Sears (U.S. Open champion for seven consecutive years), Dwight Davis (founder of the Davis Cup) and James Dwight, known as the “father” of American tennis.

The most prominent tournaments hosted by Longwood between 1917 and 1999 included the National Doubles, Davis Cup and U.S. Pro tournaments which brought the greatest tennis champions of the day – from the eras of Tilden, Budge and Laver to McEnroe, Borg and Sampras – to the club (read more on US Pro Champions and Longwood). In addition, as the first professional tournament played with a full television schedule, enlivened by commentary from long-time Longwood member, Bud Collins, the U.S. Pro tournaments exposed tennis to wide national audiences.

Among many significant events, Arthur Ashe’s 1968 victory in the National Amateur Championship at Longwood remains one of the game’s great historical moments. Ashe’s win broke the color barrier for the sport at a pivotal time in U.S. social history, and he went on to win the professional championship later that year for an unprecedented double crown.

Longwood’s prominent role in the development of the sport of tennis was not limited to men. Members Eleonora Sears and Hazel Wightman dominated the early women’s national tennis scene, winning both singles and doubles championships. Mrs. Wightman, winner of three triple crowns and 45 national titles, became known as the “Grand Dame” of tennis and introduced international women’s team play by creating the Wightman Cup. Alice Marble, Althea Gibson, Maureen Connolly, Billie Jean King and Martina Navratilova are among the great champions who have competed on the club’s grass. More recently Longwood hosted the Federation Cup, the women’s equivalent of the Davis Cup.

While the club’s role in professional tennis lessened after 1999, Longwood remains committed to top amateur play by hosting five national grass championships each year – the Father-Son, Grandfather-Grandson, Father-Daughter, Mother-Daughter and Men’s 85-90. Tennis is a lifelong sport and Longwood supports tournament play from juniors to seniors.

Longwood has also been well represented in national tennis organizations and has 15 members enshrined in Newport’s International Hall of Fame. Bud Collins, print and broadcast journalist and dean of tennis history, is among those members.

While the Longwood Cricket Club has seen many changes in its more than 145-year history, the club’s core values remain a love of the game of tennis and the sharing of friendship and sociability, in a unique and classically traditional setting.