Happy Birthday Steffi Graf: Interesting Facts About the 22-time Grand Slam Winner

·2-min read

Stefanie Graf is counted among as one of the greatest players to ever walk on a tennis arena. Prior to the emergence of American ace Serena Williams, she was considered the greatest of all time. Graf was an aggressive player and liked dominating her opponents from set one. She was primarily a baseline player and used to aim for the lines with her groundstrokes.

However, Graf was not rigid in her approach and was always ready to adapt as the situation demanded and that is what made her successful at every surface — clay, grass and hard court. Unlike many other tennis greats, Graf did not have any preference and was equally dominating on every surface.

As the German star celebrates her 52nd birthday today, here are some interesting facts about her:

  • She was ranked world number for a record 377 weeks (more than 7 years).
  • She won 22 Grand Slam titles in her 17-year-long career; the second most major trophies since the introduction of the Open Era. She is only behind Serena, who has won record 23 Grand Slams.
  • Overall, Graf is placed at the third spot in the list of major wins at the Women Singles’ event, behind Margaret Court (24) and Serena.
  • She is the only tennis player, male or female, to win all four Grand Slams and Olympic Gold medal in a single calendar year. She achieved this feat in 1988, 11 years before her retirement.
  • Graf is the only tennis player, male or female, to win each Grand Slam at least four times.
  • In 1999, she was ranked Number 3 in WTA rankings when she announced her retirement.
  • In 2001, Graf tied the knot with former world No. 1 Andre Agassi. The duo has two children together – Jaden Gill and Jaz Elle.
  • Graf and Court are the only tennis player, male or female, to win three Grand Slam trophies five times in a calendar year — 1988, 1989, 1993, 1995 and 1996.
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