No.1 Spotlight: Lindsay Davenport
Published June 10, 2013 12:00
For a few years in the early 1990s, Lindsay Davenport looked in danger of becoming one of tennis' great unfulfilled talents. From the age of 18, the big-hitting Californian had been a near-permanent fixture in the Top 10, but still had only a handful of minor titles and Slam quarterfinals to show for her efforts.
Then came the Atlanta Olympics. At a Games where so many of her compatriots were shining on the track, field and pool, Davenport couldn't help but be inspired, producing some of the best tennis of her career to capture gold. Over the following decade, freed from the shackles of expectation, Davenport went about fulfilling that boundless potential.
It was on home soil once again that Davenport made her next breakthrough, defeating arch-rivals Venus Williams and Martina Hingis en route to the US Open title. The following summer she cast her spell over the All-England Club, outgunning crowd favorite Steffi Graf over two sets of flawless grass court tennis in the final.
While there would be only one more major - at the Australian Open in 2000 - she maintained her place on the WTA's top table in one of its most competitive eras. By the time she hung up her racquets for good in 2011, Davenport had collected 55 titles (two coming after the birth of her first child) while spending nearly 100 weeks at the top of the rankings.
• One of eight women in the Open Era to have won three of the four majors. In each of her Grand Slam triumphs (1998 US Open, 1999 Wimbledon, 2000 Australian Open), she did not surrender a set the entire tournament.
• Won Olympic gold in singles in 1996 and was victorious at WTA Championships in 1999
• Most Open Era match wins (56) at Australian Open; second all-time behind Margaret Court (60)
• Rose to No.1 on October 12, 1998 and ended up spending 98 non-consecutive weeks there; finished as year-end No.1 on four occasions
• Her eight stints at No.1 is the third most all-time
• One of six players to rank No.1 in singles and doubles simultaneously
• Her 15 wins over reigning World No.1s is the third-most all-time
• Returned to singles three months after birth of first child, winning 2007 Bali and Québec City
• Her 55 singles titles is tied for the seventh-most of the Open Era. Also won 38 doubles titles, including three Grand Slams and three WTA Championships
• Her 753 match wins is the sixth-most of the Open Era
• Her $22,166,338 earned in prize money is the fifth-most all-time
• Won WTA's Player Of The Year Award in 1998 and 1999
• Won WTA's Diamond Aces Award in 1998 and 1999
• Won WTA's Karen Krantzcke Sportsmanship Award in 2004
• Won WTA's Comeback Player Of The Year Award in 2007