Tennis Identity

Tennis Flashback Wimbledon 1991: What will AA wear?

"Image… everything." Three immortal words that launched Andre Agassi into marketing superstardom.

Given his reputation, you might associate that phrase with Nike, but in fact it was for a line of EOS Rebel Canon cameras. (Canon marketing guy thinks: 'Rebel + Agassi = perfect!) Nike chief Phil Knight went bonkers when he heard about it, as the campaign totally went against the "athletes first" mantra Nike espoused.

Of course, we all know the neon and denim style that AA made famous. The look made him the first true tennis rock star, despite the presence of one John P. McEnroe. Mac had the rock star temperament, but was always quite conservative in his attire, be it Fila in the early days, then Sergio Tacchini, and finally Nike.

So it was quite a big deal when AA decided to play SW19 after skipping it for three years, saying all white wasn't for him. (Maybe, like Lendl, he was allergic to grass?) More likely he didn't think he could win on the surface. The media was in a frenzy, especially in the UK. (What, the British tabloids get over-excited?) And then AA walked onto the court June 27th, 1991 at 3:52pm local time, wearing this (below).


Agassi image as seen on

That was to be the "compromise" look that allowed him past the censors.

After several years in the wilderness wearing Adidas, he has returned to The Swoosh. And nowadays, he looks more like a member of the Wimbledon committee he so famously "battled" with. -Brinke Guthrie