Pete Sampras loses trophies in theft


Originally published on: 08/12/10 10:28

Thieves have stolen the majority of Pete Sampras’ trophies and memorabilia, the Los Angeles Times has reported.

Sampras still has 13 of his then-record 14 Grand Slam trophies, but dozens of boxes containing the silverware from his illustrious 13-year career were taken from the two units he rents at a public storage facility in Los Angeles three weeks ago.

“My first Australian Open trophy is gone, and so is everything else,” Sampras, 39, told the newspaper.

“Losing this stuff is like having the history of my tennis life taken away.”

The thieves made off with trophies from Sampras’ 64 ATP World Tour tournament victories, including his 11 Masters shields, and 24 appearances as a beaten finalist.

Also among the stolen memorabilia were six year-end No.1 trophies picked up between 1993 and 1998, an Olympic ring, two Davis Cup champion trophies and seven ESPYs, the American equivalent of the Sports Personality of the Year awards.

Everything but the large furniture also held at the storage facility was taken.

“We’ve had some housing issues and we stored things while we were sorting that out,” said Sampras, who had not insured the items as is was impossible to assess their value.

“I was like, ‘What?’ I thought there were security cameras. I thought these things were locked up tight. I was shocked.”

Sampras, who claimed his final Grand Slam title at the 2002 US Open in his final tournament before officially retiring in 2003, said he would have liked to have shown the trophies to his children.

“I’m not one to gloat about trophies, or show them off,” Sampras said. “I’ve never been like that. I just want them for my kids to see. They didn’t see me play, but I’d like them to see these things.

“For me to have it for my kids is priceless,” he added. “I just hope it hasn’t already been destroyed. That’s why I wanted to get the word out now.

“I know this is a long shot, but I’d regret it if I didn’t at least try. Maybe somebody knows something. That’s all I can hope for.”


Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.