today I send you the warmest congratulations for your birthday from your fans in Berlin and in the "Rot-Weiss". The International German Junior Championships, which you won in 1982 when you were only 14 years old, and the Berlin Junior Tournament, where you were already in the semi-finals in 1981, are sending their best wishes as well. We all wish you well and good luck. You deserve this not only for your extraordinary achievements in tennis but also for your social commitment.
Since your early childhood, you have a strong connection to the LTTC “Rot-Weiss”. Already as a 13-year-old you have been in Berlin for several weeks and months and have been working in Berlin with Hans-Jürgen Pohmann, with whom you still have a friendly relationship. Later, our honorary member, Harald Elschenbroich, took care of you for a while, until you worked with our competent Bundesliga coach Heinz Guenthardt on the recommendation of Eberhard Wensky (Tournament Director of the German Open) for many years.
You already participated as a 14-year-old at the German Ladies Open and won the tournament in the next years a total of 9 x (!) against strongest international competition; certainly also for you a highlight in your career in addition to the 22 Grand Slam victories. Your first victory against Martina Navratilova in the final 1986 will remain unforgotten in Berlin. The German Open and the Club have benefited from your success, but above all from your extraordinary popularity in Germany and around the world. One of your biggest fans was the former German President, Dr. Richard von Weizsaecker, who wanted to be present at all of your matches. Together with Boris Becker, you have initiated a unique boom of tennis sports in Germany.
As a small thank you, the "Rot-Weiss" 2004 named its traditional Center Court in "Steffi Graf Stadion". You agreed only hesitant to that at the time, but we in Berlin and at "Rot-Weiss" are always proud to talk about "our" Steffi Graf Stadium.
Since 2009, the International German Junior Championships are taking place again in Berlin and the motto of one of the most important junior tournaments worldwide is:
At the Steffi Graf Stadium: World stars start here!
In this sense, we send you our best wishes!
(Tournament Director of the International German Junior Championships and Deputy Tournament Director of the German Open at LTTC “Rot-Weiß” for more then 25 years)