Famous 20th Century Tennis Players

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 1 Roger Federer

Roger Federer
49
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: August 8, 1981
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Basel, Switzerland

Widely regarded as the greatest tennis player of all time, Roger Federer has won the most number of men's Grand Slam singles titles. He is the only person to be honored with the BBC Overseas Sports Personality of the Year award on four occasions. Despite enduring several injuries, Federer continues to dominate the tennis court.

 2 Venus Williams

Venus Williams
29
Famous As: One of the Greatest Tennis Players of All Time
Birthdate: June 17, 1980
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Lynwood, California, United States

Regarded as one of the greatest women's tennis players of all time, Venus Williams is credited with introducing never seen before power and athleticism to women's tennis along with her sister Serena. She is also credited with changing the long-standing practice of paying male tennis players more than their female counterparts as she won the fight for equal prize money.

 3 Andre Agassi

Andre Agassi
15
Famous As: Tennis Player
Birthdate: April 29, 1970
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Nicknamed “The Punisher,” former world number 1 tennis player Andre Agassi is an eight-time Grand Slam-winner and an Olympic gold medalist. He is the only male with a "Career Super Slam.” He is married to Steffi Graf. He now donates generously for children’s causes, through the Andre Agassi Charitable Foundation.
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 4 Steffi Graf

Steffi Graf
15
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: June 14, 1969
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Mannheim, Germany
Known for her footwork and forehand drive, former world number one tennis star Steffi Graf has won 22 Grand Slam titles, the third all-time record. She became the first player to win four Grand Slams and the Olympic gold in a year. She is married to fellow player Andre Agassi.

 5 Pete Sampras

Pete Sampras
15
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: August 12, 1971
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Potomac, Maryland, United States

Former professional tennis player, Pete Sampras, became the winner of 14 Grand Slam singles titles during his career. He was ranked world No. 1 in 1993 and held the record for 286 weeks. Nicknamed “Pistol Pete,” the player was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2007.

 6 John McEnroe

John McEnroe
15
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: February 16, 1959
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Wiesbaden, Germany

Widely regarded as one of the greatest American tennis players of all time, John McEnroe helped the US team win five Davis Cup titles. McEnroe is also known for his confrontational on-court behavior. His infamous bad temper on court was parodied in satirical TV programs, such as Spitting Image and Not the Nine O'Clock News.

 7 Billie Jean King

Billie Jean King
20
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: November 22, 1943
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Long Beach, California, United States
Tennis legend Billie Jean King has won 39 Grand Slam titles, including 12 singles titles and 16 doubles titles. The former world no. 1 beat Bobby Riggs in the "Battle of the Sexes" match in 1973. She also founded the Women's Tennis Association and the Women's Sports Foundation.
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 8 Martina Hingis

Martina Hingis
21
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: September 30, 1980
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Košice, Switzerland

Swiss tennis sensation Martina Hingis made waves when she won the Australian Open at age 16, becoming the youngest Grand Slam singles winner of the 20th century. The youngest world number 1, too, she was named after Martina Navratilova and was the daughter of a Czech tennis player and a tennis coach.

 9 Björn Borg

Björn Borg
11
Famous As: Tennis Player
Birthdate: June 6, 1956
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Stockholm, Sweden

Regarded as one of the best tennis players from Sweden, Björn Borg won 11 Grand Slam singles titles during his playing career. He started off as a teenage sensation and helped popularize tennis during the 1970s. The 2017 film Borg vs McEnroe was inspired by his rivalry against John McEnroe.

 10 Martina Navratilova

Martina Navratilova
15
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: October 18, 1956
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Prague, Czechia
Martina Navratilova is the world’s only tennis player to be no. 1 for more than 200 weeks in both singles and doubles. She is one of three women with a "Grand Slam Boxed Set.” She is openly lesbian and had earlier fled her country, Czechoslovakia, due to political issues.

 11 Andy Roddick

Andy Roddick
12
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: August 30, 1982
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Omaha, Nebraska, United States
Former world number 1 tennis player Andy Roddick is best known for his US Open win in 2003. He reached the finals of three Wimbledon championships and US Open 2006, only to be defeated by Roger Federer each time. Following his retirement, he focused on his non-profit, Andy Roddick Foundation

 12 Chris Evert

Chris Evert
17
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: December 21, 1954
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States
Former number 1 tennis player Chris Evert secured 18 Grand Slam singles wins. She won 157 singles and 32 doubles titles, and served as the WTA president for 11 years. The Philippe Chatrier awardee has also served as a coach and an ESPN analyst, and owns an activewear line.

 13 Arthur Ashe

Arthur Ashe
5
Famous As: Tennis Player
Birthdate: July 10, 1943
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Richmond, Virginia, United States
Died: February 6, 1993
Tennis player Arthur Ashe is best remembered for his three Grand Slam singles wins. He became the first Black player to be named to the U.S. Davis Cup team. He contracted AIDS from a blood transfusion during a bypass surgery and devoted his final years to AIDS awareness campaigns.

 14 Boris Becker

Boris Becker
8
Famous As: Tennis Player
Birthdate: November 22, 1961
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Leimen, Germany

Boris Becker is a German former tennis player who has three Wimbledons, one US Open, and two Australian Open titles under his belt. He also won an Olympic gold medal in men's doubles in 1992. Becker, who had a successful start to his career, struggled to cope with his early fame and success; he retired at the age of 31.

 15 Monica Seles

Monica Seles
14
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: December 2, 1973
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Novi Sad, Serbia
Former world number 1 tennis player Monica Seles has nine Grand Slam singles titles to her credit, eight of them for Yugoslavia and one for the U.S. At 16, she was the youngest French Open champion. Her career was affected after being stabbed on court by a Steffi Graf fan.

 16 Rod Laver

Rod Laver
8
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: August 9, 1938
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Rockhampton, Australia

Australian former tennis player Rod Laver is widely regarded to be one of the greatest tennis players of all time. He was ranked world No. 1 in nine different years. He holds 200 singles titles--the most in tennis history. He excelled on a variety of court surfaces: grass, clay, hard, carpet, and wood/parquet. The Laver Cup Tournament is named after him.

 17 Jimmy Connors

Jimmy Connors
6
Famous As: Tennis Player
Birthdate: September 2, 1952
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Belleville, Illinois, United States

 18 Ivan Lendl

Ivan Lendl
7
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: March 7, 1960
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Ostrava, Czechia

Born to professional tennis players, Czech-American tennis legend Ivan Lendl has eight Grand Slam titles under his belt. Known for his topspin groundstrokes, he later turned coach and was responsible for three Grand Slams of Andy Murray. Lendl also has a few Celebrity Tour golf wins in his kitty.

 19 Bobby Riggs

Bobby Riggs
4
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: February 25, 1918
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States
Died: October 25, 1995

 20 Goran Ivanisevic

Goran Ivanisevic
6
Famous As: Tennis Player
Birthdate: September 13, 1971
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Split, Croatia
The first Croat to win a Wimbledon men’s singles, Goran Ivanisevic also remains the only player to win the title on a wild card. His rankings improved dramatically from 125th to 16th after his Wimbledon triumph in 2001. Interestingly, the tennis star is also a skilled football player.

 21 Michael Chang

Michael Chang
8
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: February 22, 1972
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Hoboken, New Jersey, United States

Michael Chang is an American retired professional tennis player. Chang became the youngest male player in Grand Slam history to win a major title when he won the 1989 French Open at the age of 17. In 2008, he was made an inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Since 2014, Chang has been coaching Japanese player Kei Nishikori.

 22 Serena Williams

Serena Williams
33
Famous As: Professional Tennis player
Birthdate: September 26, 1981
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Saginaw, Michigan, United States

With 39 Grand Slam titles and four Olympic gold medals, Serena Williams is clearly amongst the greatest female tennis players in the history. With 23 Grand Slam singles win, she is just a win away from equalling Margaret Court’s record of 24 grand slam titles. She has bagged the top spot in WTA’s world ranking numerous times.

 23 Stan Wawrinka

Stan Wawrinka
13
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: March 28, 1985
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Lausanne, Vaud, Switzerland

Stan Wawrinka is a Swiss tennis player who has won three Grand Slam titles so far in his career. At the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, Wawrinka won the gold medal for Switzerland in the doubles event along with teammate Roger Federer. At the 2014 Davis Cup, Stan Wawrinka played a key role in the Swiss team's victory.

 24 Fred Perry

Fred Perry
7
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: May 18, 1909
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Stockport, England
Died: February 2, 1995

Fred Perry was a British tennis player. A former world No. 1, Perry won three successive Wimbledon Championships from 1934. He won eight Grand Slam tournaments, including a Career Grand Slam. He was the first player and only British player to date to achieve a Career Grand Slam. Also a table tennis player, Perry was the world champion in 1929.

 25 Jim Courier

Jim Courier
6
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: August 17, 1970
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Sanford, Florida, United States

 26 Stefan Edberg

Stefan Edberg
5
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: January 19, 1966
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Västervik, Sweden

Swedish former tennis player Stefan Edberg was once the world No. 1 professional tennis player (in both singles and doubles). He won six Grand Slam singles titles and three Grand Slam men's doubles titles, besides the Masters Grand Prix. Following his retirement from professional tennis, he began playing competitive squash and became an elite player in Sweden. 

 27 Evonne Goolagong Cawley

Evonne Goolagong Cawley
8
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: July 31, 1951
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Griffith, New South Wales, Australia

Legendary Australian tennis player Evonne Goolagong Cawley was once world number 1 and the world’s first mother to earn a Wimbledon win in 66 years. A Wiradjuri Aborigine, she is now part of the International Tennis Hall of Fame and also became the Australian of the Year in 1971.

 28 Mats Wilander

Mats Wilander
5
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: August 22, 1964
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Växjö, Sweden

Mats Wilander is a former tennis player who won seven Grand Slam singles titles from 1982 to 1988. A former world No. 1, Wilander is one of six men to have emerged victorious in Grand Slam singles tournaments on hard courts, grass courts, and clay courts. In 2002, he was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame. 

 29 Anna Kournikova

Anna Kournikova
16
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: June 7, 1981
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Anna Kournikova was once world no. 8 in singles tennis rankings, in spite of never having won a singles title. She was no. 1 in doubles, teaming up with Martina Hingis. Following her retirement from tennis due to a spinal issue, she became a popular TV personality.

 30 Ilie Năstase

Ilie Năstase
4
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: July 19, 1946
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Bucharest, Romania

 31 Grigor Dimitrov

Grigor Dimitrov
5
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: May 16, 1991
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Haskovo, Bulgaria

 32 Victoria Azarenka

Victoria Azarenka
13
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: July 31, 1989
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Minsk, Belarus

 33 Richard Williams

Richard Williams
7
Famous As: Tennis coach
Birthdate: February 14, 1942
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Shreveport, Louisiana, United States

 34 Ken Rosewall

Ken Rosewall
6
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: November 2, 1934
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Sydney, Australia

Throughout his 25-year illustrious career, Australian tennis legend Ken Rosewall has won 18 Grand Slams, including 8 singles titles. Known for his 5’7” lean frame, he was nicknamed Muscles by his teammates, apparently, for the lack of them. The son of a grocer, he had begun playing tennis at age 3.

 35 Garbine Muguruza

Garbine Muguruza
9
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: October 8, 1993
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Caracas, Venezuela

 36 Madison Keys

Madison Keys
6
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: February 17, 1995
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Rock Island, Illinois, United States

 37 Pat Rafter

Pat Rafter
6
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: December 28, 1972
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Mount Isa, Australia

Pat Rafter became the first Australian male in the Open Era to win consecutive US Open titles. The former ATP singles number 1 is also the only person with an undefeated record against tennis legend Roger Federer and is remembered for his politeness and his habit of saying “Sorry, mate.”

 38 Gabriela Sabatini

Gabriela Sabatini
6
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: May 16, 1970
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Buenos Aires, Argentina

Gabriela Sabatini is an Argentine former professional tennis player. One of the leading female tennis players in the 1980s and 1990s, she amassed 41 titles, including the WTA Finals in 1988 and the 1990 US Open. She was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2006. Also a businesswoman, she runs a line of fragrances.

 39 Denis Shapovalov

Denis Shapovalov
10
Famous As: Tennis Player
Birthdate: April 15, 1999
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Tel Aviv, Israel

 40 Gustavo Kuerten

Gustavo Kuerten
6
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: September 10, 1976
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Florianópolis, Brazil

 41 Roy Emerson

Roy Emerson
4
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: November 3, 1936
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Blackbutt, Australia

Roy Emerson is a former tennis player from Australia. A former world No. 1, Emerson won 16 Grand Slam doubles titles and 12 Grand Slam singles titles, which includes a career Grand Slam in both singles and doubles. Emerson went on to achieve another career Grand Slam, becoming the first man to complete a double career Grand Slam in singles.

 42 Nick Kyrgios

Nick Kyrgios
17
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: April 27, 1995
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Canberra, Australia

Australian tennis player Nick Kyrgios, who has had a career-best singles ranking of 13, has also been part of a few controversies. During a 2019 Wimbledon match, he apparently deliberately hit Rafael Nadal with a ball, straight in the chest, and later defended his actions, saying it was completely fair.

 43 Guillermo Vilas

Guillermo Vilas
8
Famous As: Tennis player, No. 1 of the Grand Prix seasons in 1974, 1975 and 1977
Birthdate: August 17, 1952
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Mar del Plata, Argentina

 44 Lleyton Hewitt

Lleyton Hewitt
8
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: February 24, 1981
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Adelaide, Australia

Lleyton Hewitt is an Australian professional tennis player and a former world No. 1. He has won one Wimbledon, one U.S. Open and one U.S. Open doubles title. The son of a sportsman, he developed an early interest in different kinds of sports and decided to pursue tennis professionally. He has been involved in several controversies. 

 45 René Lacoste

René Lacoste
5
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: July 2, 1904
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: October 12, 1996

 46 Jana Novotná

Jana Novotná
7
Famous As: Former Tennis player who won the women's singles title at Wimbledon in 1998 and three Olympic medals
Birthdate: October 2, 1968
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Brno, Czech Republic

 47 Tim Henman

Tim Henman
9
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: September 6, 1974
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Oxford, England

Tim Henman is a British former tennis player who won 15 ATP titles, including 11 singles titles. In 1996, he won a silver medal in the men's doubles event at the Atlanta Olympics. In 1998, Henman reached the semi-finals of the Wimbledon singles championship, becoming the first male player from the UK to do so since Roger Taylor in 1973.

 48 Mansour Bahrami

Mansour Bahrami
6
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: April 26, 1956
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Arak, Iran

Born to an Iranian hill tribesman, Mansour Bahrami grew up to be one of the greatest Iranian tennis players and a Wimbledon champion. The Islamic Revolution in his country later tagged tennis as capitalist, leading him to focus on gambling and backgammon, though he later returned to tennis.

 49 Pancho Gonzales

Pancho Gonzales
4
Famous As: Tennis Player
Birthdate: May 9, 1928
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Died: July 3, 1995

 50 Tomáš Berdych

Tomáš Berdych
8
Famous As: Tennis player
Birthdate: September 17, 1985
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Valasske Mezirici, Czechia