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Roy Mansell

Year Inducted1994 HometownToronto, Ontario

Major Accomplishments

Served on the Board of Directors of the Ontario Tennis Association (OTA) for more than 40 years and was the president from 1961-1962.
Member of the Tennis Canada Board of Directors for a decade.
Chaired many Tennis Canada and OTA committees, including the Officials Committee, High Performance Committee and Instructors Certification Committee.
His most significant contribution was in upgrading officiating.


Roy Mansell was born in England during the First World War. He began playing tennis at the age of 13 at the Cranston Park Tennis Club in Upminster, a small town east of London. Unfortunately, Mansell did not have enough time to hone his skills as the Second World War began as he was entering his prime playing years. Mansell was required to enlist in the army and served in the war in France, North Africa and Italy.
After Mansell served his time in the army, he returned to tennis and tried to pick up where he left off. He competed in the prestigious Wimbledon Championships four times, his first in 1947. Mansell earned two first round victories in the men’s doubles draw.
Mansell moved from London, England to Ontario in 1957 and began working for the Sydney Hermant’s Safety Supply Company. He quickly immersed himself into tennis and did not waste any time before starting to compete in tournaments. Mansell settled in Oakville, Ontario and entered himself in several doubles tournaments, winning numerous titles. Mansell teamed up with Bob Bedard at the 1965 Oakville men’s doubles tournament and the two ended up winning the title as they defeated Don Fontana and Henri Rochon in the final. Mansell was a chip-and-charge type of player and had very good hands at the net, which made him a competitive doubles player.
Once the club had built its first bubble in 1970, the Donalda Club hired its first year-round tennis pro, Mansell. It was Mansell’s arrival to the club that put tennis at the top priority of club activities, on par with golf. Mansell wrote a book on tennis, as he produced a manual that would become the official publication of Tennis Canada, and he is responsible for the club’s hosting of a junior international tournament that featured top players like Ivan Lendl and Yannick Noah.
From a building standpoint, Mansell became involved as a volunteer at the Oakville Club first and then at the OTA level for almost 40 years. Mansell became a member of the OTA Council and served as vice-president and then president from 1961 to 1962. He went back to his position as vice-president from 1978 to 1981. He then became the chair of several OTA committees, including; chair of OTA Umpires Committee, chair of OTA Player Development Committee and the chair of OTA Tournament Committee.
After Mansell spent a number of years with the OTA, he decided to join Tennis Canada and continue his involvement with the sport. He was the chair of the Tennis Canada Umpires Committee in 1978 and 1979 and then became the chairman of Tennis Canada Player Development from the early to mid-1980s. At the same time, he served on the Executive Committee of Tennis Canada from 1981 to 1983. Mansell finished out his involvement with tennis at the administrative level working with the OTA as the secretary and then became the chair of the OTA Teaching Professionals Committee in 1986.
His most significant contribution was in the area of officiating. Highly qualified as a referee and chair umpire, he authored a publication entitled The Yardstick. Its purpose was to help upgrade officiating standards. It was a compilation of the Rules of Tennis, Tournament Regulations, the Code of Conduct and a Code of Ethics for club players. It was a massive task back in 1978 as it was well before there were easy downloads available from the internet.
In 1976, during his tenure with the OTA and Tennis Canada, Mansell received the Ontario Special Achievement Award.