Tributes to Arthur Ashe

THERE were tributes yesterday to Arthur Ashe, the only black tennis player to win the Wimbledon men's singles championship.

Ashe died aged 49 in New York on Saturday from pneumonia related to Aids; he is believed to have contracted the HIV virus from a blood transfusion while undergoing heart surgery in 1983.

Politicians acknowledged his role in the campaign for civil rights and against apartheid. 'He served the world very well,' the Rev Jesse Jackson said. 'He dreamed on the court and beyond. He went to jail to free South Africa. He was a quality guy.'

President Bill Clinton said Ashe was the 'embodiment of true sportsmanship' and a 'true American hero', who had displayed 'grace, strength and courage every step of the way'.

Obituary, page 21

The bravest of champions, page 27