Who are the best tennis players in the world? For sure, if you ask any fan of the sport, they will have different answers depending on their favorites. This is one thing that can be subjective in nature.
If you want to know who the greatest tennis players of all time are, keep on reading the rest of this post and we will have a brief rundown of some of the names you should know and why they are considered as legends in the sport.
Table of Contents
You cannot be serious – this is the phrase popularized by McEnroe. In 1999, he became a member of the Tennis Hall of Fame. He also holds 77 career titles and 7 Grand Slams in singles, including three from Wimbledon and four from the US Open, making him deserving to be named as one of the top tennis players in the world. One of his most memorable games was in 1980 Wimbledon Final where he fought with Bjorn Borg. All in all, he was also able to record a total of 149 wins in tournaments.
With his positive outlook on every game, Nadal is one name that is inevitable when listing down the best men’s tennis players. One of his greatest matches was in 2008 where he ended up in victory at the Wimbledon against Roger Federer. He holds a total of 17 Grand Slam titles, a record that is definitely hard to match. He has a total of 75 titles. Also, throughout his career, it is estimated that he was able to make more than $94 million, making him not only one of the most famous tennis players, but also one of the richest.
When Djokovic defeated Federer in the 2014 Wimbledon, he became the first to beat Federer in four Grand Slams, which was his defining moment and made him deserve the title as one of the top ten tennis players of his time. It was in 2003 when he turned pro and it is estimated that he has already made $110 million throughout his career. In the 2016 Grand Open, another achievement was added in his belt when he became the eight-player to make a career Grand Slam. In 2017, however, his career was a bit underwhelming as he suffered losses at the Australian Open and became unable to play at the US Open because of an elbow injury.
Another great male tennis player, Borg turned pro in 1973 and is estimated to have made a total of $3.5 million throughout his career, playing both singles and doubles. He also has a total of 64 titles. A lot of you may no longer know him because of his age, but his record is still something that many may find hard to surpass. He was barely 18 when he got hits first victory at the French Open. At the age of 15, he was already playing at the Davis Cup.
Known as Pistol Pete, Sampras is another name that should be listed in the top ten tennis players of all time. It was in Wimbledon 2000 when he was able to etch a name as one of the greatest in the field. His combined earnings from singles and doubles victory reached an estimated amount of $43 million. He retired in 2002, but he has a playing record that still many people would consider as one of the best. Throughout his career, he was able to collect 14 Grand Slam titles under his belt.
Although he has earned only an average of $1.5 million in his career, Laver is still often named as one of the tennis greats. He has 200 singles titles, which is considered to be the highest in the history of the sport. Nonetheless, what really made him a recognizable tennis players name is the fact that he won the Grand Slam two times. The first was in 1962 when he was still an amateur and the second was in 1969 when he was already playing as a pro.
The list of the best 70s and 80s tennis players will be incomplete without a mention of Navratilova. Her physical fitness gave the power that separated her from many other players during her time. She left Czechoslovakia in 1975 when she was only 18 years old. She knew that staying at home won’t unlock her true potential in tennis. In her career, she was able to make 18 Grand Slams in singles. All in all, she has a total of 177 doubles titles and 167 singles titles.
The other half of the Williams siblings who made history as one of the top tennis players of all time, Serena has an estimated career prize money of $84.5 million. In 2016, she was also recognized as the highest-paid female athlete in the world. Between 2002 to 2017, she has been named by the Women’s Tennis Association eight times as the number one in singles. She has seven Wimbledon crowns and a total of 71 career titles. Playing with her sister, Venus Williams, the pair made a total of 14 Grand Slams in doubles.
Hailing all the way from Germany, Graf may have passed her prime, but her name remains one of the most commonly mentioned when listing the best tennis players ever. She earned her first international ranking at the age of 13, which made her the youngest person to achieve such a record. Her powerful and intense forehand made her a known name in the sport. She has a total of 117 titles, out of which, 22 are major titles. She earned these titles throughout her career that span from 1982 to 1999. She has swept four Grand Slams and also played in the 1988 Olympics.
When talking about the greatest tennis player of all time, the name of Roger Federer is one that will be frequently mentioned. A native of Switzerland, Federer has been ranked by the Association of Tennis professionals as the number one in men’s singles tennis. While he played many memorable games, one that allowed him to ink a name for himself was when he defeated Pete Sampras at the age of 19. At that time, Sampras has been the Wimbledon champion for seven times. In 2017, he was ranked number four amongst the highest paid athletes in the world. As such time, it is estimated that he has won $108 million throughout his career. He is perhaps the greatest of all time and no one would disagree with me on that!