Best Tennis Players of All Time

These tennis greats continue spellbinding us with their performances even today—winning a plethora of trophies along the way.

Here’s our list of the greatest tennis players of all time who have raised quite a racket throughout the game’s history.

The Best Tennis Players of All Time

Boris Becker

Boris Becker—Net Worth of $15 Million

Born in Leimen, Germany on November 22, 1967, Boris Franz Becker started conquering the tennis world from an early age. Becker turned professional and won his first doubles title in Munich in 1984.

He was deservedly inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2003.

The Boris Becker vs Pete Sampras rivalry

Boris Becker and Pete Sampras went head-to-head a total of 19 times, with Pistol Pete winning the majority (12).

Boris Becker as a coach to Djokovic

Between 2013 and 2016, Boris Becker helped an already great Novak Djokovic take his game to another level. Under Becker’s leadership, Djokovic won 6 Grand Slams—holding all four major titles at one point.

Andy Murray

Andy Murray—Net Worth of $165 Million 

Sir Andrew Barron Murray started playing tennis three years after his 15 May 1987 birth in Glasgow, Scotland— and by the time he was 8 years old, he even played against adults.

Despite the prominence of his contemporaries, such as Federer, Djokovic, and Nadal, Andy Murray still managed to win 46 ATP singles titles (14 ATP Masters titles). Thus far, his cupboard includes three Grand Slam titles. In addition to the two Andy Murray Wimbledon wins, he also snagged the title at the US Open in 2012 from Novak Djokovic.

Andy Murray vs Novak Djokovic

Born a week apart, Murray and Djokovic are undoubtedly two of the greatest tennis players of all time. The friendship and rivalry between these two tennis greats started as early as their junior camp days when Murray won the first-ever match they played against each other.

They played each other 36 times—19 of which were finals. Until today, Djokovic has won 25 times (11 finals), taking the commanding lead after Murray’s Wimbledon Championship win in 2013.

Björn Borg

Björn Borg—Net Worth of $40 Million

No list of the best tennis players in history would be complete without Björn Rune Borg—a former No. 1 tennis player born on 6 June 1956 in Stockholm, Sweden.

Bjorn Borg is still considered one of the best male tennis players of all time since he accomplished several feats, such as winning the French Open–Wimbledon double three consecutive times.

Bjorn Borg vs John McEnroe

Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe had one of the most iconic rivalries in tennis history, which culminated in their legendary match at the 1980 Wimbledon finals. Between 1978 and 1981, these two famous tennis players met a total of 22 times (14 on the regular tour), and they remained evenly matched until Borg’s withdrawal from the sport.

Bjorn Borg’s company

Björn Borg founded his own sportswear brand in 1984. His company creates apparel for a physically active clientele, such as bags, footwear, fragrances, and glasses. Although, the brand is best known for its Björn Borg underwear for men and women.

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John McEnroe

John McEnroe—Net Worth of $100 Million

The game’s most provocative player in history is perhaps John McEnroe—born on February 16, 1959, in Wiesbaden, West Germany to American parents.

Ever since McEnroe won the mixed doubles title at Roland Garros with Mary Carillo, his career—akin to his temper—exploded and netted him over $12.5 million in prize money. John McEnroe had conquered a total of seven Grand Slam finals—four on home soil at the US Open and three on the grass at Wimbledon.

John McEnroe’s rivals

Who can forget the epic games between Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe, or the ones against Jimmy Connors? Johnny Mac was the man who ended Bjorn Borg’s Wimbledon run and denied him the opportunity to win at the US Open that same year.

Pete Sampras

Pete Sampras—Net Worth of $150 Million

Petros “Pete” Sampras was born on August 12,1971 in Washington, D.C., U.S. Despite starting his professional career at 16 with a loss and a rank No. 893, he would end the year ranked as the world No. 97.

Pistol Pete was on his way to becoming one of the best male players of all time after winning his first Grand Slam at the US Open in September 1990, finishing the year at No. 5. Until his final professional match—a win at the 2002 US Open finals—Sampras triumphed a total of 14 times in Grand Slam finals. He won seven times at Wimbledon, five US Opens and two Australian Opens.

Pete Sampras vs Roger Federer: Who would win if both were at their best?

When discussing the tennis GOAT, we must surely include both Sampras and Federer since they managed to elevate the game to a whole different level. The only professional matchup of these two tennis giants was during the round of 16 at Wimbledon in 2001—which The Swiss won in five sets.

Pete Sampras vs Andre Agassi

Hailed as one of the longest and greatest tennis rivalries of modern times, the Sampras vs Agassi matchups awed the tennis public for 13 years. One hailed as the best server, the other one as the best serve-returner, they met a total of 34 times—with Sampras coming ahead on 20 of those occasions.

Andre Agassi

Andre Agassi—Net Worth of $175 Million

Another superstar featured on our list of best tennis players in history is U.S.-born Andre Kirk Agassi. In 1983, a 13-year old Agassi left his birth city—Las Vegas—to devote his life to tennis at Nick Bollettieri’s Tennis Academy in Florida.

The Las Vegas Kid is the first tennis player to achieve a Career Grand Slam after Rod Laver in the 60s, meaning Andre Agassi has won Grand Slams at every venue and on every type of surface. Agassi started his Grand Slam run at Wimbledon in 1992, before winning two US Opens, four Australian Opens and one Rolland Garros. 

Andre Agassi vs James Blake at the 2005 US Open

One of the best matches of recent tennis history took place in the quarterfinals of the 2005 US Open between Andre Agassi and James Blake. The 35-year-old Agassi did not start well, losing the first two sets to the ten years younger Blake. However, what ensued was one of the best comebacks in tennis history.

Serena Williams

Serena Williams—Net Worth of $225 Million

When completing a list of the all-time tennis greats, one should seriously consider including Serena Williams as well. Despite her gender, Serena Jameka Williams—born on September 26, 1981, in Saginaw, Michigan—possesses the skills necessary to compete with even the best male tennis players.

Serena Williams is currently the highest-earning female athlete of all time, with winnings nearing $94.5 million.

Serena Williams titles 

Since turning professional in 1995, Momma Smash has won a record number of 23 Grand Slam singles titles in the Open Era. Her first Grand Slam singles triumph was the 1999 US Open win against Hingis. Moreover, together with her sister Venus, she also won the doubles title at the same tournament. Counting her doubles (14) and mixed doubles (2) titles, Serena has won a total of 39 Grand Slam titles.

Winning four Olympic gold medals is another crucial milestone in Serena’s career.

Serena Williams rivals

No matter where they played, the Serena Williams vs Maria Sharapova match yielded drama. The two stars met 22 times on the court, with Serena winning 20 of the matches. Yet, despite Serena’s dominance, their matchups always aroused the interest of the public and the media due to their similarly aggressive playing styles and personal clashes.

Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic—Net Worth of $220 Million

The current No. 1 tennis player—Novak Djokovic—was born on 22 May 1987 in Belgrade, Serbia. Choosing him for our list of best tennis players of all time was a no-brainer since he is still breaking records with each passing day.

Novak’s love for the game was nurtured by his parents, who gave him a mini racket and a foam ball before sending him to a tennis camp at 4 years of age.

Novak Djokovic titles

As of today, Djokovic has won a total of 85 ATP singles titles, including 22 Grand Slams is tied at the top with Rafa. After winning his first Grand Slam at the 2008 Australia Open, Djokovic joined Nadal and Federer to form the “Big Three” of modern tennis. Since then, he has won a record number of nine Australian Opens, six at Wimbledon, three at the US Open, and two French Opens—the only player of the Open Era to win a double Career Grand Slam.

In addition to his major titles, Nole also holds a joint record with Nadal of 36 Masters wins. Moreover, he is the only player in the game’s history to win all nine Masters titles—a feat he has accomplished twice already, which is why now he is one of the highest-paid tennis players.

Novak Djokovic rivals 

Rafael Nadal vs Novak Djokovic is one of the all-time greatest rivalries on the tennis court.  At the 2011 Wimbledon, Novak Djokovic defeated Nadal in a major tournament for the first time in his career. Thus far, they have played each other 58 times—an Open Era record for head-to-head matches between male players—and “The Djoker” leads 30–28.

Novak Djokovic vs Roger Federer is considered one of the best hard-court rivalries in the history of tennis. They have met 50 times during their careers, 38 of which took place on hard surfaces. Novak Djokovic is the only player who has won against Federer at all four Grand Slams. Likewise, Federer is also the only man who has defeated Djokovic in all four major tournaments.

Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal—Net Worth of $200 Million

The second “Big Three” player to be considered for the lofty position of the top tennis player of all time is Rafael Nadal Parera—born on June 3, 1986, in Manacor, Mallorca, Spain. Nadal was introduced to the world of tennis by his uncle Toni, who has remained his coach for most of his professional career.

Rafael Nadal titles

El Nino has won 20 Grand Slam singles titles (a record shared with), with most of them (13) on clay at the highest-payed tennis tournament, Roland Garros. His other major titles include four US Opens, two Wimbledons and one Australia Open. After winning the 2008 Olympic gold medal and the 2010 US Open, Rafael Nadal has joined Agassi as one of only two male players to earn the coveted Career Golden Slam.

Rafael Nadal vs Roger Federer

Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer have a modern-day rivalry equaling the best in the game’s history. These two fantastic players are regularly included in any list of the greatest tennis players of all time. Therefore, anytime they go against each other, the public delights in the spectacle they provide.

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Roger Federer

Roger Federer—Net Worth of $450 Million

Crowning our best tennis players in the history list is none other than Roger Federer. The oldest of the “Big Three” was born on 8 August 1981 in Basel, Switzerland, where he played various sports that significantly improved his hand-eye coordination, such as basketball and badminton.

On his way to the top, King Roger has accrued a total of 20 Grand Slam wins; an impressive record shared with Nadal and Djokovic. He won most of his major titles on Wimbledon grass (8) and at hard courts (6 Australian Opens and 5 US Opens). The only time Roger Federer won the French Open was in 2009. He also has one of the biggest sponsorship deals in sports.

Roger Federer rivals 

From Agassi and Murray to Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, only a handful of the world’s tennis greats have managed to upset Federer’s game throughout his long career.

Who’s the King of the Court Then?

We’ve presented the tennis GOAT case for ten exceptional players in the paragraphs above. So, who is the top tennis player of all time then? What are your thoughts on the king among the best tennis players of all time?

No matter, really. With the still-ongoing careers of the “Big Three”, that choice will ultimately boil down to either Federer, Nadal or Djokovic.

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