Former South African Grand Slam champion jailed for raping underage girls

Pretoria, May 19: A South African court has jailed former Grand Slam doubles champion Bob Hewitt for six years for raping underage girls.

Hewitt was also asked to pay a fine to the South African justice department, which will be used in its fight against sexual abuse.


In March, Hewitt, 75, was convicted of two counts of rape and one sexual assault on girls he was coaching in the 1980s and 1990s.

The former tennis player was also criticised by the court for not showing any remorse during the trial.

One of Hewitt's victims said she was assaulted by him at the age of 12.

Judge Bert Ram said the striking similarities between the three victims' testimonies showed that Hewitt's conduct was calculated.

Hewitt's wife Delaille pleaded the court to show him mercy and not hand over a custodial sentence.

Australia-born Hewitt had won a number of Grand Slam titles in the 1960s and 1970s and he is expected to appeal against his conviction and punishment.

Hewitt, who was a multiple Grand Slam doubles champion in the 1960s and 1970s (in men's and mixed) and also a member of South Africa's Davis Cup-winning team in 1974, is expected to appeal against his conviction and sentence.

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