The history of the productLA DIVINE
The "Goddess" 1926
Suzanne Lenglen began playing tennis at 11 years old. She was trained by her father who decided to make her a champion. In 1914, at age 15, she became World champion on clay court, winning the finals against the English woman Golding in two sets. It was the beginning of an outstanding career which was stopped for a while during World War I.
Except for the year 1924 when she was sick, she dominated women tennis until 1926 when a rival emerged, the American Helen Wills. At the age of 18, Helen had already been three times US champion. She came to Europe in the spring of 1926 to challenge Suzanne who was then called “The Goddess”.
The two young women stayed on the Riviera in France to play the winter tournaments. After having paid attention to not meet for a few weeks, observing each other, they both registered to the Cannes tournament. The much-awaited meeting finally occurred on February 16, 1926 on the Hotel Carlton court.
The game, announced by the press, draw a large crowd of tennis passionate. The 3000 seats were booked in one hour. Some people climbed on top of close-by houses to watch the game. The referee was Commandant Hillyard, Wimbledon club secretary and referee for the Ladies’ Wimbledon finals who came specially for the occasion.
The game was spectacular. Suzanne won 6-3 8-6. The two players expected to meet again for the French Championships in June. This did not happen as Helen had an appendicitis attack and had to stop playing for the rest of the year.