For my 14th birthday, my father surprised me with tickets to see a winner-take-all-match at Madison Square Garden between two of the greatest tennis players of a past generation -- Rod Laver and Richard "Pancho" Gonzales.

"Rocket Rod," as Laver was nicknamed, had won tennis' Grand Slam that year, while the fiery and flamboyant Gonzales, though slightly past his prime, still retained his vast legions of fans.

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