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Last Updated: Wednesday, 18 June, 2003, 14:26 GMT 15:26 UK
Classic Matches: Connors v Pernfors
1987 - Men's Singles Fourth Round
J Connors (US) bt M Pernfors (Swe) 1-6, 1-6, 7-5, 6-4, 6-2

Jimmy Connors
Connors - king of the comebacks
If anyone needed proof that Jimmy Connors was the greatest fighter ever to grace a tennis court, they need only look at this match.

At the age of 34, it looked as if time had finally run out on the two-time champion who had not won a tournament for four years.

Mikael Pernfors cruised into a 6-1 6-1 4-1 lead as the light started to fade on Centre Court.

If Connors needed an excuse to lose, he could have pointed to a leg injury. But he was made of sterner stuff.

Probably the first to employ the fist-clenching exhortations so common in today's stars, his never-say-die attitude came into full flow as he worked the crowd into a frenzy.

The tide turned and Perfors was swept away, Connors winning 18 of the last 25 games.

Pernfors, whose other great claim to fame was that he was at the other end when John McEnroe was disqualified at the Australian Open, did not know what had hit him.

The American said afterwards: "My ego was hurt. I had to do something. So I decided to fight even harder."

Connors continued his swansong until the semi-finals, where he lost to eventual champion Pat Cash in straight sets.

He played another four Wimbledons, still causing the occasional upset. His last tournament came in 1992 when he went out in the first round at the age of 39.





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