In 1969, Charlie Pasarell won the first two sets against Hall of Famer Pancho Gonzales at Wimbledon. The match would go on to be the longest played at Wimbledon until 2010, but the second set was brief. However it didn’t lack drama, as Pasarell recalls in the second segment of their match for National Hispanic Heritage Month.
Because they played the last match of the day, and the marathon first set was won by Pasarell 26-24, it began to get dark on Centre Court.
Gonzales, who was 41 at the time, complained about not being able to see the ball. However, Wimbledon officials said the match needed to go on, which ignited Gonzales’ infamous temper.
Pasarell was sharing his story and career as part of a Ginn & Topics special series for National Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs from Sept. 15 through Oct. 15.