The day Boris Becker netted German hearts

BERLIN - A slight nod and a brief smile... that is how Boris Becker, below, looks at the defining moment of his tennis career: the Wimbledon title in 1985, in a television ad.

BERLIN - A slight nod and a brief smile... that is how Boris Becker, below, looks at the defining moment of his tennis career: the Wimbledon title in 1985, in a television ad.

Tomorrow marks the 25th anniversary of the moment that changed his life forever and introduced average Germans to the sport.

"The victory was my personal lunar landing," says Becker. "On the one hand it appears like yesterday. On the other hand it seems like 100 years ago."

Becker's triumph over South African Kevin Curren is one where in Germany the question "where were you when..." is appropriate.

The teenager had gripped a nation and 11million Germans were glued to their television sets on that Sunday, July 7, when Becker stepped up for his second match point after double faulting on the first.

A service winner followed as Becker completed the 6-3 6-7 7-6 6-4 victory over Curren, who had been favourite after disposing of Stefan Edberg, holder John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors in the previous rounds.

The victory made Becker the first German Wimbledon champion, the first unseeded one and the youngest in tournament history aged 17 years and 227 days.

His home town of Leimen became the centre of Germany and many recall how his father, Karl-Heinz Becker, was snapping away as Becker received the trophy. - Sapa-DPA

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