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Monday, March 27, 2006
No deal: Borg decides against selling trophies

Associated Press

STOCKHOLM, Sweden -- Bjorn Borg has decided not to auction off his five Wimbledon trophies after all.

Bjorn Borg highlights
Although his recent history has been marked by financial troubles, Bjorn Borg will be remembered as one of the best men's tennis players of all time. Among his career highlights:

• Six-time French Open champion (1974-75, 1978-81)
• Won five consecutive Wimbledon titles (1976-80) and reached finals in 1981
• Four-time U.S. Open finalist (1976, 1978, 1980, 1981)
• 41-match winning streak in 1979-80 is fourth-best in the Open Era.
• Retired in 1983 at age of 26
• 1987 inductee into International Tennis Hall of Fame
• Won $3,609,896 in career prize money.

The Swedish great, the only player to win five straight Wimbledon titles, changed his mind after pleas from his fans, London auction house Bonhams said Monday.

Borg had announced earlier this month he would sell his trophies and two of his title-winning wood rackets in order to achieve "financial security."

"After great consideration and reasoning, I have decided that I will never sell my Wimbledon trophies and rackets and I have withdrawn them from sale," Borg said in a statement.

"Trophies of this kind have a meaning that goes beyond my comprehension of the victories, as they emphasize the bond between me as a player and all the people, family, friends and fans that have stood behind me through the years -- people that have my love and respect," he added.

Andre Agassi and other players urged Borg not to sell the trophies.

Borg won all of his Wimbledon titles between 1976 and 1980. The silver gilt trophies had been expected to fetch anywhere from $350,000 to $525,000.

Since his career ended, Borg has had several failed financial ventures. He fought hard to avoid bankruptcy after a company that marketed clothing bearing his name ran into deep financial trouble in 1990 and was restructured.

In 1997, Borg's friends helped him avoid bankruptcy after 11 creditors demanded he pay more than $1 million owed from the failed clothing company.