Jairo Velasco Sr.

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Jairo Velasco
Full nameJairo Velasco Sr.
Country (sports) Colombia
ResidenceBarcelona, Spain
Born (1947-05-09) 9 May 1947 (age 73)
Bogotá, Colombia
Height1.73 m (5 ft 8 in)
Career record125–164
Career titles0
Highest rankingNo. 46 (20 December 1982)
Grand Slam Singles results
French Open2R (1969, 71, 75, 82, 83)
Wimbledon1R (1972, 1975)
US Open4R (1976)
Career record105–116
Career titles2
Grand Slam Doubles results
French Open4R (1971)
Wimbledon2R (1974)
US Open2R (1972)
Grand Slam Mixed Doubles results
French OpenSF (1973)
Wimbledon3R (1973)
US Open1R (1972)

Jairo Velasco Sr. (born 9 May 1947) is a former professional tennis player from Colombia.[note 1]


Velasco teamed with Iván Molina to reach the fourth round of the 1971 French Open, where they were beaten by eventual champions Arthur Ashe and Marty Riessen. In mixed doubles at the 1973 French Open, he and countrywoman Isabel Fernández de Soto lost in the semifinals in three sets to Patrice Dominguez and Betty Stöve. He became the first Colombian to reach the fourth round of the singles draw at a Grand Slam when he beat three players at the 1976 US Open, Ferdi Taygan, Barry Phillips-Moore and Bill Scanlon. His run ended when he lost to Dick Stockton.[1] He remained the only player from his country to go that deep in a Grand Slam tournament until Alejandro Falla made the four round at the 2011 French Open.

The Colombian made seven doubles finals on the Grand Prix tennis circuit, winning two, at Kitzbühel and at home in Bogota. He also made the singles final at Bogota, in 1979, but lost to Víctor Pecci.[2]

He won 24 singles rubbers for the Colombia Davis Cup team, a national record. In all, he participated in 21 ties and won a total of 33 matches, having also been victorious in nine doubles rubbers. He was most notably a member of the side which defeated the United States in the North & Central America Zone final of the 1974 Davis Cup, beating both Harold Solomon and Erik van Dillen in his two singles rubbers. In the Americas Inter-Zonal final, which curiously featured the South African team, Velasco lost his first match to Bob Hewitt and was defeated in the doubles, to surrender the tie. He then beat Ray Moore in a dead rubber. The Colombians, with Velasco in the side, made the Inter-Zonal final again in 1981, but were defeated by Chile.[3]


Early in his career, Velasco relocated to Barcelona in Spain, where he still lives.[4] He married a woman from the area, and they have three children, including Jairo Velasco Jr., a doubles specialist on the ATP Tour and Gabriela Velasco Andreu, who has been in the world's top 400.[5]

Grand Prix career finals[edit]

Singles: 1 (0–1)[edit]

Result W-L Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Loss 0–1 1979 Bogotá, Colombia Clay Paraguay Víctor Pecci 3–6, 4–6

Doubles: 7 (2–5)[edit]

Result W-L Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponents Score
Loss 0–1 1974 Calgary, Canada Carpet (i) Colombia Iván Molina West Germany Jürgen Fassbender
West Germany Karl Meiler
4–6, 4–6
Loss 0–2 1974 Salt Lake City, United States Hard (i) Colombia Iván Molina United States Jimmy Connors
United States Vitas Gerulaitis
6–2, 6–7, 5–7
Win 1–2 1974 Kitzbühel, Austria Clay Colombia Iván Molina Czechoslovakia František Pála
Hungary Balázs Taróczy
2–6, 7–6, 6–4, 6–4
Loss 1–3 1977 Florence, Italy Clay Colombia Iván Molina New Zealand Chris Lewis
New Zealand Russell Simpson
6–2, 6–7, 2–6
Loss 1–4 1979 Quito, Ecuador Clay Colombia Iván Molina Chile Jaime Fillol
Chile Álvaro Fillol
7–6, 3–6, 1–6
Win 2–4 1979 Bogotá, Colombia Clay Mexico Emilio Montaño United States Bruce Nichols
United States Charles Owens
6–2, 6–4
Loss 2–5 1981 Mar del Plata, Argentina Clay Spain Ángel Giménez Australia David Carter
Australia Paul Kronk
7–6, 4–6, 0–6

Challenger titles[edit]

Singles: 3[edit]

No. Year Tournament Surface Opponent Score
1. 1979 Le Touquet, France Clay Spain Fernando Luna 4–6, 6–3, 6–3, 6–1
2. 1981 Tarragona, Spain Clay Spain Eduardo Osta 6–4, 6–2
3. 1982 Porto, Portugal Clay Spain Juan Avendaño 6–7, 6–3, 6–3

Doubles: 1[edit]

No. Year Tournament Surface Partner Opponents Score
1. 1979 Le Touquet, France Clay Spain Antonio Muñoz France Éric Deblicker
France Georges Goven
6–0, 3–6, 6–3


  1. ^ ATP sources erroneously have him representing Spain during his career


External links[edit]