Even regular tennis season consists of 4 Grand Slams played of different surfaces. These 4 greatest tennis tournaments include the Australian Open, French Open, US Open, and Wimbledon. These are the most prestigious events in the game in terms of ranking points, prize money, and overall player legacy. We analyze their playing surfaces, tournaments history along with the male and female players who have been most successful in these major championships.
The Australian Open
The Australian Open is among the most important hard court tennis tournaments played every year. The great event is held in January at Melbourne Park and is the first of the 4 Grand Slams of the game. The championship was started long back in 1905 and was played first on grass before switching to the hard courts.
This great tournament has produced many dominant champions with Serbia’s Novak Djokovic being the most successful male champion having won 8 trophies there. In the female section, Margaret Court won the championship 11 times in her career.
The French Open
This is the second among the 4 Grand Slams held every year. It is one of the most prestigious tennis tournaments played on the red clay. Roland Garros was started in 1897 and since then continues to be played on the clay courts. It is regarded as the most difficult slam to win in terms of physical exhaustion.
The greatest champion in French Open history has been Spain’s, Rafael Nadal. He has won the championship on 12 occasions till now and looks good for a few more. Rafa is thus, deservingly called as the King of Clay. Among the female tennis stars, America’s Chris Evert won the tournament a record 7 times.
The Wimbledon Championships: Grand Slams
Wimbledon is arguably the most prestigious among the 4 Grand Slams of the game. It is also one of the oldest tennis tournaments having started in 1877 for the men’s edition and 1884 for women. It is also the only major championship to be held on the grass-courts these days and follows many well-known traditions.
Roger Federer is the most male Wimbledon champion in the Open Era with 8 trophy wins there. Among the female, Martina Navratilova leads the list having won 9 singles titles won at the Centre Court of SW19. The grass courts being the quickest of all tennis surfaces demand an attacking game-style.
The US Open: Grand Slams
The US Open held in New York every September is the last of all 4 Grand Slams played in a calendar year. It was also started long back in 1881 and was played on grass courts first. Later the tournament was switched to the clay courts and finally in 1977 the hard courts were chosen. The US Open offers maximum prize money among all tennis tournaments.
The US Open unlike other Grand Slams has not seen much of any single player being much dominant. Roger Federer, Pete Sampras, and Jimmy Connors have won this event 5 times each. Among WTA players Chris Evert and Serena Williams hold a record 6 trophies each. In terms of the crowd intensity, the US Open is among the most liked and lively tennis tournaments on the globe.