Arthur Ashe's Wimbledon medal tops tennis memorabilia auction at $21,000

An online auction featuring a raft of professional tennis player Arthur Ashe's (1942-1993) belongings closed yesterday (February 6), with the star's 1971 Wimbledon men's doubles medal finishing top lot.

The runners-up medal sold for $21,013, having garnered 16 bids during the week long sale. The 1971 medal represents one of Ashe's first Wimbledon successes, and was awarded at a time when he was considered an up and coming Wimbledon contender, having won the US Open in 1968.

Arthur Ashe auction
Ashe’s Wimbledon men’s doubles runners-up medal was awarded in 1971 – after one of Ashe’s first finals on English soil

South-African born Ashe would go onto become the first black man to win Wimbledon in 1975.

Ashe's Sports Illustrated 1992 "Sportsman of the Year" award also put in a strong performance, bringing $14,315. Bearing the Sports Illustrated logo, the plaque attached to the trophy reads: "For Symbolising in Character and Performance / The Ideals of Sportsmanship."

Arthur Ashe auction
Ashe's teeth were pulled from the sale

Ashe's death certificate sold for $4,652 and his 1970-1975 American passport, which contains the stamp from the tennis player's landmark re-entry into his apartheid-divided homeland in order to participate in the South African open, sold for $4,153.

The successful sale of so many of Ashe's personally owned items suggests that the market for tennis memorabilia - particularly that related to the careers of those "game changing" players - remains as strong as ever.

Here at Paul Fraser Collectibles we are lucky enough to be able to offer this Bjorn Borg signed photograph for sale.

For more on the investment potential of the sports memorabilia market, see our free guide to investing.

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