'Becker Wrecker' Peter Doohan dies at age 56
- Sandy Roberts
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Former Australian tennis player and coach Peter Doohan has died at the age of 56.
Dubbed the 'Becker Wrecker' after famously defeating two-time defending champion Boris Becker in 1987 at Wimbledon, Peter reached a career-high world ranking of No.43.
In a tweet on Saturday evening, Becker said: "My heartfelt condolences to the family of #PeterDoohan! The tennis fraternity lost a great guy and wonderful player!"
In a statement issued on Saturday, Tennis Australia said the tennis family was deeply saddened by the news.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends.
"Peter was unbeaten in Davis Cup representation. He won the South Australian Open singles title and reached No.15 in doubles, winning five titles during his distinguished career.
"Following his retirement, Peter coached in the United States, after first studying at the University of Arkansas, where he was all-American and a NCAA champion. He returned to live in Australia in 2009," the statement said.
"The tennis community rallied around Peter during his battle with a particularly aggressive form of motor neurone disease which was diagnosed just nine weeks ago.
"A moving tribute to Peter, led by former Davis Cup captain John Fitzgerald, along with a fundraising auction, were featured at the annual International Club Wimbledon Dinner at Kooyong last week.
"Peter is survived by his mother Thelma, his sons John (26) and Hunter (23), both based in the United States, and his sisters Cathie and Margaret.
"His funeral will take place in Newcastle with further details to follow."