Jimmy Connors is a name that created shock waves during his time as a professional player. However, there was a player whom he regarded as the best player of all time, his friend cum rival, Ilie Nastase. The Romanian player shared a great bond with Connors. However, friends do have their moments of banter and fun and they had theirs as well.
In a recent podcast, Jimmy shed light on a friendly bet that took place between the two players while the American player was expecting a child. He also acknowledged how he traveled all the way to see her wife amid playing a match against Nastase.
Jimmy Connors recalls traveling to his wife just after the match
In a recent revelation, Jimmy revealed that as he was about to play the first-round match in 1979, he got a call from his wife. Following the call, he asked if he had time to play the match or if he should just skip it and come. His family friend Dr. Gregg suggested that he can play the match, however, he’ll have to be quick, and as soon as the match ended, he’ll have to book a plane home.
As soon as he reached, he saw his wife who was suffering for around 20 hours in labor pain. After spending around 3 hours in the hospital and consulting with the doctor, he got home but could not put his head to his pillow out of stress. At that point, he received a call from Nasty who congratulated him and jokingly said that he was much stronger than he thought would have been. ‘Connors you son of a b***h!” and I said, “I told you I warned you” he says “you’re a little stronger than I thought” (laughs)”‘ revealed Jimmy in the podcast.
However, behind this was a bet that both the players had while they were playing against each other.
Jimmy and Ilie Nastase had a bet worth 500 bucks
Jimmy reveals that he was traveling south of France to play Ilie Nastase when the two had a conversation. Ilie Nastase disapproved of Connors’ verdict of having a son. He said that he could not have a son because he is not strong enough, said Ilie jokingly.
“Connors no way you can have a boy. No, no way.” I said, I said “I’m telling you.” said Nasty jokingly to which he replied, “I’m telling you, “Nasty, I said I want to have a boy. So I’ll bet you 500 bucks.” However, based on the verdict the two had a bet worth 500 bucks where Jimmy said that he is pretty sure that it will be a boy and will prove Nastase wrong. Thus, this friendly banter between the two describes the bond that they had. Irrespective of the place from where they belonged, they had a great relationship both on and off the court.