Now that Wimbledon has finished for 2019 I thought I would see who people consider are the greatest male and female tennis players.
In my opinion they would be Rod Laver and Margaret Court. Laver’s two grand slams in 1962 and 1969 make him the greatest male player and Margaret Court’s Grand Slam (Singles, doubles and mixed doubles) is without peer.
Maureen Connolly Brinker, “Little Mo”, the first woman to win a Grand Slam.
Her record is outstanding and one will never know how good it would have been if she had not been forced to retire due to her accident horse riding. One of my considerations when choosing who I think is the greatest related to longevity and that is the reason I did not consider her the greatest.
Have you read her daughter, Cindy Brinker Simmons’, book “Little Mo’s Legacy, A Mother’s Lessons, Daughter’s Legacy”? It really is a touching book.
A short time after having read the book, I visited Dallas, Texas, & took a wrong turn off the LBJ in my rental car. When I turned off the road to turn around, I was in the lot of Brinker Communications, CIndy Brinker Simmons’ company.
No I haven’t. I will have to check my local library to see if they have a copy of it.
I won’t argue with you about Laver, but your bias is showing with Margaret Court. A great deal of her slams came at the Australian Open, which a lot of the best players at the time did not play. Also, slam titles weren’t as big of a deal back then as they are now. Navratilova’s 167 single titles and 177 double titles are much more impressive records than any of Court’s accomplishments. And Court couldn’t even beat Bobby Riggs.
Look at Margaret Court’s record against her contemporaries such as BJ King and Maria Bueno. She has a superior head to head against them all. I believe Court won 172 singles titles in total. I would also contend that travel from Australia in her era was far more difficult than it is today.
I am not sure what you mean by the slam titles weren’t as big then as they are now. The grand slams were the pinnacle of tennis then as they are now.
The circus against Bobby Riggs doesn’t count. In my opinion after Margaret Court I would rank (not in order) BJ King, M Navritlova and S Graf next of the players I have seen.
Federer has won twice the number of the four majors (French, Aus, US, Wimbledon) as Laver.
But Laver couldn’t compete in slams for about five years because he turned professional.
However, from 1963 to 1967 inclusive (20 grand slam events) Laver was not allowed to compete In 1962 he completed the grand slam and in 1969 he completed his second grand slam.
Laver won four consecutive Wimbledons that he was allowed to compete in: 1961, 62, 68 and 69.
He has also won 5 Davis Cups.
The Australian Open wasn’t even considered a grand slam back then. Besides from Wimbledon, players weren’t really obsessed with slams like modern players are according to John McEnroe.
Navratilova’s titles are WTA titles. Court is about 15 years older, so she played a lot before the Open Era. It was a completely different environment back then.
And I was kidding about Bobby Riggs.
It was considered a grand slam as it is now. I don’t argue that its standing then wasn’t as prestigious as it is now but the bottom line is that it was and is one of the 4 grand slams. Perhaps you can elaborate on what players in that era considered more important than the slams.
Who in your opinion is the greatest female tennis player?
The grand slams back then were more important than other tournaments. They just weren’t THAT MUCH MORE important like they are now.
I would say Martina and Serena are the best ever with Graf right behind them.
Of course it was a different era. That doesn’t invalidate Court’s record before and after the start of the Open era and competed successfully after she became a mother.
As a matter of interest how do you think some of the contemporary players would perform in the pre-Open era of wooder racquets, white tennis balls and advantage sets?
I will agree to disagree with you with respect to Serena Williams.
I think it would take Serena some time to get used to a wooden racket, but she would have eventually dominated. Of course she and fellow competitors wouldn’t have the modern PEDs.
Why do you think that Williams would have dominated?