Wake held for Brazil tennis great Maria Bueno

Brazilian'queen of tennis Maria Bueno claimed the Wimbledon title four times in the 1950s and'60s

Legendary Brazilian tennis player Maria Bueno, who won three Wimbledon and four United States championship singles titles, has died at the age of 78 after battling mouth cancer. She was the first non-American woman to win Wimbledon and the U.S. Open in the same season.

Bueno was also a prolific doubles player, claiming women's titles at all four of the grand slams from 1958-68 and a mixed doubles championship at Roland Garros in 1960.

She had recently been admitted to hospital suffering from mouth cancer.

She swept the Brazilian scene, then the Caribbean circuit, and grabbed worldwide attention by winning the Italian Championships in 1958, beating the best English and Australian players.

"She was the reigning queen of tennis in her day", King, who won the 1965 Wimbledon doubles championship with Ms. Bueno as her partner, told the New York Times in 1987. Upon her death, the country's president, Michel Temer, said Bueno "will always be remembered as the No. 1 of tennis in the hearts of all Brazilians". These included Wimbledon singles titles in 1959, 1960 and 1964, and the US National Championship - precursor to today's US Open - in 1959, 1963, 1964 and 1966.

Later that year, she won the first of her four U.S. Open titles and was named the year's top female athlete.

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Bueno said men were key to her game.

Her last major title came in 1968 when she won the doubles title at the U.S. Open alongside Margaret Court - one of her biggest rivals in singles.

A tweet posted on the official Tennis Hall of Fame account referred to Bueno as an "accomplished champion who leaves a lasting legacy of inspiration to generations".

Born in Sao Paulo, Bueno started playing tennis at the age of 6 and entered her first tournament at 11.

Retiring from the sport in 1977, she became a commentator herself for the Brazilian channel SporTV. "And the people at the other end didn't know why, until I changed ends and served from there". "I had a lot of natural talent, but I had to work hard too", she told The Times.

"Later I wore panties that resembled the club colors, which outraged the club committee and they brought in the all-white clothing rule".

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