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An Appreciation of Jim Martz from a Friend and Colleague

An Appreciation of Jim Martz from a Friend and Colleague

Like so many of you, I was saddened when Florida Tennis arrived and I saw “In Loving Memory of Jim Martz” on the front cover.

I met Jim for the first time in the early 1980s at the Orange Bowl, Sunshine Cup, and Continental Cup, international junior events he was then covering for the Miami Herald and I was covering for foreign tennis magazines. His love of tennis, the writing profession, and Florida shined warmly and brightly, much like the Florida sun.

“I was blessed,” Jim wrote in an article Florida Tennis excerpted, because “I was covering a sport [in the early 1970s] that was exploding at the amateur and pro level.” The truth is, tennis, and especially Florida tennis, was just as blessed because Jim accelerated that explosion that produced millions of new players and fans. His knowledgeable, enthusiastic, fair-minded coverage of our sport in the Miami Herald for 18 years and then for 31 more years as the publisher and editor of Florida Tennis made Jim one of the most impactful journalists in American tennis history.

Jim and I became friends, and we regularly stayed in touch over the years. We discussed regional, national, and international tennis issues and shared our views on how we could improve the sport and tennis journalism as members and later officers in the United States Tennis Writers’ Association and as concerned observers when other regional tennis publications (with rare exceptions) declined and died. We co-wrote a piece about their plight and the great importance of regional tennis magazines that appeared in Racquet Sports Industry magazine.

The poignant pieces by Cameron Mofid (“Remembering My Friend, Jim”) and Adam Ross (“Recollections of My Friend and Mentor, Jim Martz”) added greatly to my knowledge of and admiration for Jim, the man.

Florida Tennis has flourished under Jim Martz and his talented team since 1992, and I’m sure this indispensable, authoritative magazine — with the expert, experienced Matt Pressman as its publisher — will flourish for decades to come.


Paul Fein has received more than 40 writing awards and authored five books, the most recent being GAME CHANGERS: How the Greatest Players, Matches, and Controversies Transformed Tennis, which Coaches Choice will publish in April. His other books are The Fein Points of Tennis: Technique and Tactics to Unleash Your Talent (2021), Tennis Confidential: Today’s Greatest Players, Matches, and Controversies (2002); You Can Quote Me on That: Greatest Tennis Quips, Insights, and Zingers (2005); and Tennis Confidential II: More of Today’s Greatest Players, Matches, and Controversies (2008). Fein is also a USPTA-certified teaching pro and coach with an Elite rating, a former director of the Springfield (Mass.) Satellite Tournament, a former top 10-ranked men’s open New England tournament player, and a No. 5 nationally-ranked Super Senior player. His website is His email address is

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