In January 2003, Esther Vergeer, a 21-year old Dutch wheelchair tennis player lost her singles match to Daniela Di Toro in the quarter-finals of the Sydney International. What no one knew at the time was that this was the end of an era. Now 31, Vergeer hasn't lost a singles match since. The world's most dominant athlete
in an individual sport, she's going for her 470th consecutive victory
today, in the gold medal match at the Paralympics. [more inside]
posted by Homeboy Trouble
on Sep 6, 2012 -
Women's Pro Tennis Turns 40.
Women's professional tennis was launched by World Tennis
magazine publisher Gladys Heldman
40 years ago on September 23, 1970, with a tournament that had nine entrants and $7,500 in prizes. The original nine
were Billy Jean King and Rosemary Casals along with the lesser known Peaches Bartkowicz, Judy Dalton, Julie Heldman, Kerry Melville, Kristy Pigeon, Nancy Richey and Valerie Ziegenfuss. A year later, King became the first female athlete to earn six figures in her sport. In the '80s, Martina Navratilova became the first to earn $1 million. Today the WTA Tour
is an $85 million-a-year sport. "We wanted to make sure that any young girl, if she was good enough and if she wanted to, would have the opportunity to make a living playing tennis," King said.
posted by rcade
on Sep 24, 2010 -
Happy 18th Birthday Maria Sharapova!
A music video by ESPN's Bristol Bob and the Page 2
Crue, made in honor of Maria Sharapova's 18th birthday. Make sure you crank the volume knob up to 11, because now you, too, can sing along to the tune of The Knack's "My Sharona."
posted by MmmKlunk
on Apr 20, 2005 -
If you are a prominent sports organization suffering under budget cuts and dwindling crowds, not to mention if some of your main players are threatening to form a breakaway group
, what could possibly be your next move? How about alienating your fans?
That's exactly what the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP)
, the governing body of men's professional tennis, did. More inside . . .
posted by somethingotherthan
on Mar 9, 2003 -
Okay, so the tabloids take the eroticization
of female tennis players to the extreme, including The Mirror, which has paid
Barbara "Babsi" Schett 50,000 pounds to promote her as the next Anna Kournikova. Last fall we talked
about women sports players being on beauty, not talent
; while the beauty judging goes on, they forget to even mention player records
. There's Babsi
, Anna, Jelena Dokic
, and the supposedly beautiful Krasnoroutskaya who says
of Kournikova what everyone keeps saying about good-looking female players in general: "She makes the beauty of tennis. She started it. Now tennis is very popular. People come to watch her. That helps everybody."
posted by Mo Nickels
on Jul 6, 2001 -