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Carroll, Elfie


Honor Award Induction: 1970

Hall of Fame Induction: 1996

Elfie Carroll, a New York State tennis champion in singles and doubles and ranked 14th in the US by the US Tennis Association in 1952, won three National Women’s championships (1950, 1955 and 1958) and four straight Mixed (1949-1952) with her husband, a record that stood until 1982 when it was tied by Hilary Hilton Marold and Doug Russell. Her Women’s wins in 1955 and 1958 were all the more remarkable since she and her husband moved to eastern Long Island in 1952 where she had few opportunities to play. (Seminole Club, Forest Hills, NY).

Elfie Carroll was not as widely known as many of the players from New Jersey, Westchester or Connecticut where there had been tremendous growth in the number of courts and in amount of play. She was a resident of Forest Hills and played platform tennis at the Seminole Club there in the late 1940′s and early 1950′s at a time when Long Island was not a hot bed of the game as it later became. In 1952, she stopped playing the game almost altogether when she and her husband moved deep into the hinter lands of that sandy Indian reservation known as Long Island. As the Shinnecock Indians put it – “Quoguei wachi” – or – “No Courts”.

None of this deterred her excellence on the courts. She would win a National tournament, put the racket down for a year and pick it up a few days before the next tournament and win again. Over a twelve-year span, from 1949 to 1960, she was a winner or finalist 14 times in the Woman’s and Mixed. She won the Woman’s three times—in 1950, 1955 and 1958—and was runner-up five times—in 1951, 52, 53, 57 and 1960. She and her husband won the Mixed four straight years, from 1949-1952, a record that stood almost 30 years. She is the third ranking woman in total number of APTA Tournaments in which she either won or was a finalist.. Many believe she would have had an even more impressive record had she had the chance to play more often.

Elfie was a former New York State tennis champion in singles and doubles and was able to quickly adapt her tennis prowess to platform. Her big shot was her forehand, hit with a western grip and with an effective over-spin and in her prime was considered to be one of the best women volleyers with quick reflexes and great agility.

Elfie was born Elfriede Kriegs-Au in Vienna, Austria on November 5 1915. She came to the US around 1939 with her husband Ronald who was born in Poland who she had met in Havana, Cuba in the mid 1930s