Tennis365’s Top 10 British players
10. Heather Watson
Heather Watson edges out Laura Robson, Annabel Croft and Jeremy Bates by virtue of having won more titles.
Much was expected from Watson when she won the 2009 US Open Junior singles titles, but she has so far failed to replicate that success on the senior stage.
However, she has three WTA titles to her name while she also won the 2016 Wimbledon mixed doubles crown with Finland’s Henri Kontinen. The pair made it all the way to the final again in 2017, but lost against Martina Hingis and Jamie Murray.
9. Jo Durie
She only won two WTA singles titles over a career that spanned nearly two decades, but she also reached the semi-finals of two Grand Slams.
Dury was the best British female player during the 80s and her best year on the Tour was in 1983 when she made the last four at the French and US Opens, and also reached the quarter-final at the Australian Open. The following year she made it into the quarters at Wimbledon.
8. Roger Taylor
He was Great Britain’s biggest hope during the 70s as he often reached the latter stages of the Grand Slams, but sadly he never made it to the finals with Wimbledon (3) and Australian Open (1) semi-finals his best results. He also claimed the scalp of one Bjorn Borg en route to a semi-final appearance at Wimbledon in 1973.
He did, though, win the Grand Slam doubles title at the US Open in 1971 and 1972.
When he retired in 1980 he finished his career with six singles titles and achieved a career-high ranking of eight.
7. Johanna Konta
Konta has been competing on the WTA Tour since 2010, but she only really hit the headlines from late 2015 when she reached the quarter-finals of the US Open.
However, 2016 was her breakthrough year as she reached the Australian Open semi-finals, beating Venus Williams along the way, and then a few months later she won her maiden WTA title at the Stanford Classic by beating the same Williams in the final.
Two more titles followed in 2017, including the Miami Open, but her most impressive result was at Wimbledon where she became the first British woman to reach the semi-finals at SW19 since Virginia Wade in 1977, but her run came to an end against Venus Williams.
Konta reached a career-high of fourth in the rankings on the back of her Wimbledon semi-final performance.
6. Greg Rusedski
He only started representing Britain in 1995 as before that he competed under the Canadian flag, but by 1997 he was the nation’s top-ranked player as he reached number four in the world that year.
Unlike Tim Henman, he actually did reach a Grand Slam final as he finished runner-up to Pat Rafter at the 2001 US Open. However, he rarely went beyond the fourth round at Grand Slams and outside of the US Open final, his best other result was a Wimbledon quarter-final appearance in 1997.
Henman was no doubt the darling of Great Britain, but Rusedski actually won more titles (15 to Henman’s 11).
5. Tim Henman
Henman was considered by many as Britain’s best male player from the late 90s until Andy Murray came along.
His best moments were always at Wimbledon as Henmania gripped Great Britain for two weeks every year. Who can forget Henman Hill or his four semi-final appearances in five years, including the epic one against Goran Ivanisevic in 2001?
His highest ranking was fourth in the world in 2002 and he won 11 ATP singles titles, but sadly finished runner-up on more occasions (17) and never made it to a Grand Slam final.
Besides his Grand Slam semi-final appearances, his other career highlights were winning the 2003 Paris Masters, beating Roger Federer in the 2001 Swiss Indoors final and a silver medal in the men’s doubles at the 1996 Atlanta Games.
4. Sue Barker
Her crowning moment came at the French Open in 1976 when she beat Renáta Tomanová from the Czechoslovakia to win her one and only Grand Slam title. Her other best Grand Slam results were semi-final appearances at the Australian Open in 1975 and 1977, and Wimbledon in 1977.
Her highest world ranking was number three in 1977 on the back of her Grand Slam semi-final losses, while she finished her career with 11 WTA singles titles and 12 doubles titles.
3. Virginia Wade
Wade remains the last British woman to a win Grand Slam title and her 1977 Wimbledon success was also the last time a Brit, male or female, won any Grand Slam title until Andy Murray secured the US Open in 2012.
Her first Grand Slam crown came at the 1968 US Open and four years later she would add the Australian Open title to her collection before capturing the big one at Wimbledon in 1977. She also won four Grand Slam doubles titles with the great Margaret Court.
2. Fred Perry
It is always difficult to include players from different eras, but when you have eight Grand Slam titles on your CV then you deserve to make the list. He was the first player to win the Career Grand Slam as he has won three Wimbledon and US Open titles as well as one Australian Open and one French Open.
Before Andy Murray’s 2013 success, Perry was the last British player to win the gentlemen’s title at Wimbledon in 1936.
He also won four Davis Cup trophies, two Grand Slam doubles crowns and four Grand Slam mixed doubles titles, and topped the world rankings.
As if that is not enough, he also won a couple of World Table Tennis Championships.
1. Andy Murray
Many believe Murray is Britain’s great living sportsman. He took over the mantle as British No 1 in 2006, but there were always doubts over whether or not he would reach the top, especially as he was up against Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic for most of his career.
After four Grand Slam runners-up trophies, including a four-set defeat to Roger Federer at Wimbledon in 2012, Murray finally got his breakthrough at the same SW19 venue during the London Games as he defeated Federer in straight sets to win Olympic gold.
A few weeks later he beat Djokovic in five sets to claim the US Open and then followed it up at Wimbledon the following year with a straight-sets win over the Serb.
However, it was in 2016 when he really cemented his legendary status as he won his second Wimbledon title with victory over Milos Raonic and then went on to successfully defend his Olympic title.
The cherry on top of the cake was the world No 1 ranking for the first time in his career and his first ATP World Tour Finals at the end of 2016.
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