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UK edition

The Rivals:
Chris Evert vs Martina Navratilova,
Their Epic Duals and Extraordinary Friendship

Author Johnette Howard tells ChrisEvert.Net:

“The Rivals’ is a journalistic look at Chris and Martina's rivalry and friendship based on exhaustive research and extensive interviews with Chris and Martina, as well as original interviews with more than 60 people who played a part in their careers. Chris was kind enough to grant me two days of interviews expressly for the book this past summer. I've covered Martina the past 11 years. The idea of the book is to put their personal stories and legendary careers in the proper detail and context for the first time, and to give Chris and Martina the import in sports history that they deserve.”

An excerpt of the Publisher's Description of the book:

‘The Rivals’ is a vivid, fast-paced, entertaining view of the epic rivalry and extraordinary friendship that Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova shared, beginning in 1973. Their showdowns evolved into the greatest and longest-running individual rivalry in sports history --- a captivating, seesawing 80-match odyssey that stretched on for 16 years, and included 60 finals. Along the way, Navratilova and Evert established themselves as two of the greatest athletes of the 20th Century, and two women who came to symbolize some of the profound cultural shifts playing out at the time.

One of the abiding mysteries about Evert and Navratilova is how could two supremely determined athletes maintain a friendship, given what they were competing for and the emotions and heights they hit. The answer lies at the core of understanding their remarkable story: Evert and Navratilova were two people who fervently wanted the same thing, found each other in the way, and ultimately forgave each other for it. They were bound by their superiority, and operating so far above everyone else on tour, they came to realize they were the only two people who really, truly understood what the other was going through: the hellish pressure, the unforgiving expecations, the way their self images hinged on one question: Did I win or did I lose? There was the isolating, pinhole focus it took to be a champion. Their overlapping personal life dramas. And then - after all that - there were the feelings that came from still managing to win, dominate, succeed.

‘The Rivals’ book will include a lot of personal background as well that hopefully gives insight to them as people, not just tennis players. Evert and Navratilova are iconic figures to several generations sports fans, both male and female. Millions of fans felt they knew Evert and Navratilova, to the point they referred to each athlete on a first-name basis, and even identified themselves as either "Chrissie" fans or "Martina" fans. This book will allow anyone who has even a passing familiarity with them to emotionally reconnect with their memorable sports drama, and it will reveal their story for those who didn't live through those times themselves.

During the course of their 16-year rivalry, Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova met on the tennis court a record 80 times -- 60 times in finals. Along the way, their showdowns evolved into the greatest and longest-running individual rivalry in sports.

Evert's early-career 20-4 edge against Navratilova begins to erode as Navratilova makes the changes that transform their odyssey into the stuff of legend. --- Newsday


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