“In the early 1980s, Southern California’s legendary tennis star Jack Kramer gave this racket to then L.A. Times sports editor Bill Dwyre. It was, and is, one of the original Wilson Kramer rackets, which was at one time the best-selling and most-used tennis racket in the world, by far. Dwyre never used it. He accepted it as a keepsake, not a sports tool. It remains in mint condition, original strings and all. Two other reasons Dwyre never used it: (1) He never felt his game was worthy of this gift and (2) the handle grip is 4-7/8, which was Kramer’s grip size and obviously proof that this truly was one of Jack’s own rackets. Few mortals have hands big enough to play tennis with a 4-7/8 grip But then, in the sport of tennis, Kramer was never mortal.”
It’s that kind of magical storytelling that has made Bill Dwyre a legendary voice in sports journalism for more than four decades. A former sports editor whose coverage of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics earned him national accolades, Dwyre has covered as wide a sporting myriad as anyone could imagine, harboring an ongoing love affair with the game of tennis.
He has reported from Wimbledon and the Australian Open a whopping twenty times, and was on the job when Southern California’s Lindsay Davenport hoisted the Aussie trophy in 2000. Dwyre has received seven U.S. Tennis Writers Association awards, and when he retired from the Times in 2015, his final Twitter thoughts were nods to the great Bud Collins and American talent Mardy Fish.
As sports editor of the Los Angeles Times, the Notre Dame alum was celebrated with countless honors, including National Press Club Editor of the Year. In 1996, he received the prestigious Red Smith Award from the Associated Press for contributions in sports writing.
USTA Southern California is honored and excited to announce that Bill Dwyre will be writing several feature stories for USTAsocal.com during the BNP Paribas Open, which he has covered in depth since 1982. Be sure to connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to follow Dwyre’s reflections, as well as all things Indian Wells, as the BNP Paribas Open kicks off on March 3.