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Celebrating Women’s History Month • From The Vault • Australian Tennis Legend Louise Pleming Receives TennisBalls.com Humanitarian Award

Louise Pleming comes from a place called WAGGA WAGGA, Australia. She played a high level of tennis in the juniors and had a nice career on the WTA Tour in both singles and doubles. She was always the friendliest and fairest player on tour. She was the first person to welcome the Williams sisters. Louise has “classic clean” strokes • she is a beauty to watch play for sure. She continues in tennis as a coach and a TV commentator. We caught up with her between N.Y., L.A. and Oz.

Louise was awarded the Gussy Moran Humanitarian Award. Louise is the 4th recipient of the award. The first went to Henry Talbert • a true friend of tennis for 50 plus years. His award was given in Pauley Pavilion from Novak Djokovic who was playing an exhibition at Henry’s alma mater as well as, where his office as head of the Southern California tennis association was.

The next went to “Bally” Elena Baltacha a British number one who passed away at age 30. By 25 years old she had already established a program for girls in Ipswich to learn tennis. She knew boys could play football (soccer) but she knew the need was there for the girls to play a sport.

Elena “BALLY” Baltacha

The third “Gussy Humanitarian Award” was awarded to Gardnar “Gar” Mulloy a top player his whole life into the seniors – a true inspiration who lived to be 100 years plus. He loved both the award and Gussy. He grumbled about how was he a humanitarian? I had to remind him • he was lifelong vegetarian, peace activist, animal rights activist and navy captain. As well as, as the 21 year old coach at the University of Miami he brought in Pancho Segura who was 18 and had no schooling and spoke no English to the team.

Louise has recently started a group in her home of Sydney, Australia –  RALLY4EVER

Instagram – rally4everaus

Twitter – rally4everaus

Facebook – rally4everaus

A bit more about Louise Pleming and Rally4Ever.


Louise Pleming is one of Australia’s top high performance coaches and a respected commentator. A former professional player herself, she is well aware of the physical benefits of tennis.

A chance meeting four years ago, while volunteering at a kitchen for homeless people in Sydney, made her appreciate that the sport has the power to transform lives in other ways too.

“A gentleman by the name of Brian approached me and said: ‘I know who you are, would you play tennis with me?’” Pleming explains.

“So a week later I met Brian, who had been living on the streets for quite a few years, and we played tennis. I saw an incredible shift in his mentality through the benefits of playing tennis and having that human connection. It’s been a relationship that has grown and I continue to play tennis with him.”

This experience inspired Pleming to create Rally4Ever, an foundation that encourages greater community connection through physical activity.

At a base in Sydney’s Rushcutters Bay area, the organisation offers free tennis and fitness classes to homeless and disadvantaged community members. Rally4Ever is now also offering online classes, inspired by the need to lift wider community spirits among the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

For Pleming, the ability to make a difference is heart-warming.

“All my life I’ve felt really lucky that I’ve played tennis and it has given me so many opportunities. I’ve done so many different things within the sport,” she says.

“Coaching at a high performance level, the biggest reward for me was to see athletes grow to become great tennis players and also great human beings.

“When you get on court with someone who is homeless, you can see a shift in a different way. Their self-esteem grows. You really are changing someone’s life and helping him or her.

Pleming is thrilled with the widespread support the organization is receiving from local councils, companies and tennis clubs. She is especially proud many of the players she has worked with in the past have offered to help too.

“It’s been amazing. So many of our young players all across Australia have reached out and said ‘Lou, how can we help?’” she says.

“It’s really great to see as a tennis coach you can impart some of your values onto players.”

 “They have been amazing. Together we have been going out and building brand awareness. We’ve been going to clubs to play with people and talk about Rally4Ever, just getting people excited and engaged. The uptake has been incredible.”

Passionate about creating access for everyone in the community to feel connected and enjoy physical activity, Pleming has big dreams for the organization’s future.

“We really want to grow this all around the country,” she says.

“We are now trying to set up more and more opportunities and facilities. We will need to do some fundraising and we are looking for more volunteers who are like-minded and want to give back. Eventually once we get the commercial side really going, we want to contribute back to society as well.”

Having already seen the impact the organization can have, Pleming is determined to keep transforming lives of disadvantaged people.

“Tennis is such an amazing sport. It really is a sport for life,” she says.

“This has grown from a small idea from one person and the change I saw Brian having, which motivated me to say we can certainly help more people. That’s our vision – to keep inspiring people.”

Now onto Gertrude Augusta Moran also known as Gussy Moran or “Gorgeous Gussy” or frilly “Wimbledon Knickers Gussy.” Here at 10sBalls.com and TennisBalls.com knew Gussy well.  We loved her. She was an amazing woman. Very kind and bright. She could really play big tennis. Similar story to Anna Kournikova. Her talent wasn’t noticed as much as her beauty. Gussy hit a big forehand back in the day. Always a top tenner during a time that the only number that mattered was number 1.  In 1939 she wore the Teddy Tingling dress with the knickers with a little lace on them. Wow! In those days the ladies mostly played in a golf type skirt to the knees.

Gussy had an amazing life. She was taught  mostly by Bill Tilden. She lunched weekly with Charlie Chaplin. She Dated Gloria Vanderbilt’s first husband. Pat de Ciccio (her life’s love) she dated princes and sheiks and married 3/4 times and then it all sort of fell apart. Tennis was sadly still an amateur sport. Gussy taught hearing-impaired kids tennis. She taught inner city kids. Not once or twice but daily. She gave all she had to anyone that needed help. Gussy was very kind and brilliant woman who was way before her time. She loved the super tennis as she called it. The new equipment. She loved the new players. She would have loved to go back to Wimbledon or her favorite country, Australia. She loved the Aussies. Lew Hoad was her favorite.

We congratulate Louise Pleming for all her past and present endeavors. Exercise is proven to improve mental stability.