Which female tennis players do you consider to be the finest of all time? However, there are many athletes who deserve to be considered among the greatest of all time. Following is a list of the top 10 female tennis players in history, ranked by how many Grand Slams they won.
Since the inaugural Wimbledon Championships for women in 1884, the sport has advanced significantly. Women were initially barred from competing alongside males and had to participate in a separate “Ladies” tournament. It wasn't until the first “Open” Wimbledon tournament in 1968 that women were officially allowed to play alongside men.
Since then, we've seen some incredible female tennis players who've captivated audiences everywhere. We've compiled a list of the top 10 female tennis players of all time in their honour.
10. Lindsay Davenport
American tennis player Lindsay Davenport once held the No. 1 spot in the world. Over her career, she took home three Grand Slam singles trophies and four Grand Slam doubles titles. She also excelled at singles tennis, and in 1996 she won an Olympic gold medal for her efforts.
See also; Top 10 hottest women tennis players.
9. Venus Williams
One of the most accomplished female tennis players of all time is Venus Williams. In terms of the greatest female tennis players of all time, she ranks ninth.
The older sister of Serena Williams, Venus Williams is also a professional tennis powerhouse in her own way. Williams owns a total of 21 Grand Slam titles, 7 in singles and 14 in doubles (with her sister Serena). She has won two singles and two doubles Olympic gold medals, and has been rated as high as No. 1 in the world.
See also; 10 of the world’s richest tennis players.
8. Justine Henin
Belgian tennis player Justine Henin spent 117 weeks as the world's best. As a single player, she won seven Grand Slam tournaments and the Olympic gold medal in 2004. After being sidelined in 2008 by an elbow injury, Henin made a comeback to tennis in 2010, but she eventually gave up the game for good in 2012.
See also; 20 of the hottest female athletes in the world.
7. Billie Jean King
Billie Jean King was one of the first female tennis players to reach mainstream success and fame, and she is widely regarded as a pioneer of the sport. Billie Jean King has gone down in tennis and feminism history as a towering figure. It's worth noting that she broke the record for annual earnings by a female athlete, making almost $100,000. She played a key role in having tennis recognised as a medal sport at the 1976 Summer Olympics, having created the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) in 1973.
The sport of women's tennis owes a great deal to Billie Jean King, who was an early innovator in the field. She was a pioneer in the movement to create equal opportunities for women tennis players by aiding in the establishment of the Women's Tennis Association. King won 39 Grand Slam tournaments altogether, including 12 singles, 16 doubles, and 11 mixed doubles. Also, she made history by becoming the first woman admitted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame.
6. Monica Seles
Former world No. 1 tennis player Monica Seles hails from Yugoslavia. Prior to her terrible career ending stabbing in 1993, Monica Seles was one of the most promising young players of her time. One of the greatest female tennis players of all time.
An unfortunate on-court event led the brilliant tennis star Monica Seles to retire far too soon. Before she was stabbed to death by an enraged fan in 1993, Seles had won nine Grand Slam singles titles. She returned to tennis, although she was never quite the same player she had been before.
5. Chris Evert
Chris Evert was a groundbreaking player for women's tennis and one of the best of her generation. She spent 260 consecutive weeks at the top of the rankings, making history as the only female player to ever achieve that feat. She has a total of 18 Grand Slam singles titles and 3 Grand Slam doubles titles. She has 125 straight victories on clay courts, which is a record.
Consistently regarded as a top performer. When ranking the greatest female tennis players of all time, Evert is considered the fourth best. Seven different times, she finished the year as the best singles player in the world. The competition between Evert and another great player of her period, Martina Navratilova, was equally well-known.
4. Serena Williams
Serena Williams is one of the most powerful players in tennis history, with 23 Grand Slam singles titles. This is the most won by any active female player and second most ever, behind Margaret Court's 24. She has won four gold medals in the Olympics. Again, in the Open Era, she is unrivalled in terms of Grand Slam doubles victories, having won a record-breaking 14. She holds the record for most Grand Slam singles titles won by a tennis player, ever.
Serena Williams is one of the all-time greats on the tennis court and a tremendous champion in her field. Williams has the accolades and reputation to back up her status as one of the best players of all time.
3. Margaret Court
Margaret Court, one of the best tennis players of all time, holds the record with 24 Grand Slam singles titles. After sweeping the 1970 Grand Slam tournaments and taking home the Olympic gold medal, Court set a new record for most major titles won in a single year. In 1971, as a result of her efforts, she was recognised as Australia's Person of the Year.
In the history of women's tennis, Margaret Court stands out as a great trailblazer. In 1970 and 1973, she made history by being the first woman to win all four Grand Slam singles titles in the same year. On top of that, she's the only player, male or female, to ever win a Grand Slam singles title on each of the four major surfaces (clay, grass, and hard court).
2. Steffi Graf
Steffi Graf, a tennis player from Germany, held the No. 1 spot for a record 377 consecutive weeks. Just below Margaret Court's record of 24 Grand Slam singles titles is where she ranks.
In addition to Navratilova, Steffi Graf is often regarded as a tennis legend. Of 1988, she also became the first player in either gender to win all four Grand Slam singles titles and the Olympic gold medal in the same year, earning her the coveted Golden Slam.
Martina Navratilova is largely regarded as one of the best female tennis players of all time. She played in a time when women's tennis was at its peak, and her accomplishments in that time period are undeniable. At the Grand Slam Championships, Navratilova won a total of 59 trophies, 18 in singles, 31 in doubles, and 10 in mixed doubles. She was ranked first in the world for an unprecedented 332 weeks.
Martina Navratilova is widely regarded as one of, if not the best, female tennis players of all time. Martina Navratilova set a record by capturing nine Wimbledon singles titles and three Olympic gold medals.