Tennis went global with the establishment of ATP and WTA in 1972 and 1973. Since then, it has spawned many of the world’s most remarkable tennis players and all-time greats.
Five of the best players hailed as sports icons in the world of tennis are:
1. Roger Federer – 17 Grand Slams, 237 weeks of relentless victories, he is a tennis god who dominated the men’s singles from 2004 to 2008.
2. Pete Sampras – 14 Grand Slams, and 7 Wimbleton titles, he outplayed tennis legends John McEnroe, Ivan Lendi, and Andre Agassi.
3. Rod Laver – the Australian born prodigy was the only tennis player to win 4 Grand Slams all in the same year. He won 11 Slams.
4. Rafel Nadal – earned his Career Grand Slam at 24, 11 Slams, and Olympic Gold medal, he was named among the greatest tennis players of all time.
5. Bjorn Borg – winning 11 Grand Slams and 4 consecutive French Open Titles, he dominated the men’s in the late 70’s.
Tennis is a popular sport worldwide. Famous tournaments include the U.S. Open, the Australian Open, the French Open and the Wimbledon Championships. These are also known as the Grand Slam tournaments which are held annually on different occasions.
The sport had its origins in France where it became a popular past time in the late 12th century. Other countries adopted the sport and made some modifications on the specifics of the game. Countries that excel in tennis include Spain, USA, France, Argentina, Australia, Germany, Belgium, Sweden, Netherlands, Russia, Italy, and Brazil.
The game is played between two players (singles), or between two teams (doubles). The objective is to get the most number of points by striking the tennis ball into the opponent’s court until the other player fails to return the ball before bouncing twice, strikes the tennis ball into the net, went out of bounds, or committed a double fault.
Striking the ball with the racket is just half of the skill needed to win matches. Precision, control, and timing requires a lot of practice. The trick is to focus first on making accurate strikes and gradually improve in strength, speed, and agility once you have mastered controlling the ball.
The Australian Open Tennis Tournament 2013 has started in January 14 and will end on January 27 at the Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne.