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Violet Summerhayes

Year Inducted1991 HometownToronto, Ontario

Major Accomplishments

Won the Canadian Open (Rogers Cup) women’s singles title a record seven consecutive times at the turn of the century (1899-1905).


Violet Summerhayes was an absolute star in Canadian tennis during the turn of the twentieth century. She is the only woman to have won as many as seven consecutive Canadian Open singles titles. There was definitely enough competition for her, as she was among an elite group of female tennis players, but she was unstoppable on court from 1899 to 1905.
Three times she defeated an opponent that went by the name Burgess and was forced to a five set match against Burgess in 1901 but prevailed 6-3, 2-6, 6-0, 0-6, 8-6. The year before, Burgess had forced their match to a fourth set, but again came up short to the remarkable Summerhayes.
“Among the women, the name that exploded out of the 1899 championship was Toronto’s Violet Summerhayes, a virtual unknown who went on to hold her title for a record-breaking six years against increasingly formidable opposition. Indeed, until her nemesis came along in the form of May Sutton, a remarkable Wimbledon champion, Summerhayes was virtually unbeatable,” (Peter Ustinov, Advantage Canada).