Tennis has truly come a long way toward becoming a sport with a fashion statement. Gone are the days of boring and basic colours and styles. Now, major brands spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to design styles for the ladies of tennis which can set new trends and debut new lines of sneakers and accessories to go along with it. Gone are the days of practicality, comfort and ease - its a new age of looking great!
Wimbledon is an exception out of all the tennis matches with its very strict all-white uniforms. But lets be honest, that hasn’t stopped the women from mixing it up with crystals, alluring cuts and sleek silhouettes. Now with every major grand slam game, the press and fans are looking to the female tennis players to not only show off their game but also their personal style, personality and attitude through colours and bold styles.
Female tennis players have truly changed the game - from the jewellery that Sharapova sparkles in to the latest tennis shoes that Azarenka always matches with her fancy outfits in any tournament she participates in to the trendy athleisure trends that Serena sets in every match she ever plays.
Its not always a win-win, as sometimes the styles don’t always work and can actually backfire. But either way beauty is beauty and we are here to appreciate the good, the bad and the not so great. So let’s get into a list to show you the drool-worthy and cringe-worthy side of how it all goes down.
16 Drool: Ana Ivanovic
Ana Ivanovic will never have a photo that can make us look away. Trust me, I tried searching… it’s impossible! Everything about the retired former number 1 is impeccable - from her fashionable style to her gorgeous smile which would make any man go crazy!
It’s no surprise that she was able to capture the attention of Bastian Schweinsteiger.
The couple began their relationship in September 2014 and were married on July 2016 in beautiful Venice. On 28 December 2016, the 30 year old Serbian signalled the end of her tennis career after she announced her retirement. She stated that she wasn’t able to play up to the big standards in the major tournaments. She was clearly making a big move in her life when in November 2017 Ivanovic announced that the couple was expecting their first child. The Women’s circuit will definitely miss the beauty which is Ivanovic.
15 Not: Sara Errani
Now that is a game face… and Errani really brought it to the game! I remember being introduced to Errani in 2012, where she was playing her finest tennis. Errani was waving the Italian flag very high and proudly as she was featured in BOTH the Women’s singles and doubles final in the French Open. However, Errani was up against Maria Sharapova and when the Russian Miss was tagged to be a favourite, so you know that she was probably going to win. She did in 2 sets of 6-3 and 6-2. But it's not all sadness for Errani, she along with her Doubles partner Roberta Vinci have won close to 5 grand slam doubles tournament over the past 2 years! Viva Italia!
14 Drool: Heather Watson
I might have some major critics but most of you guys have to admit that Heather Watson is the sportier and most definitely English version of the recently engaged soon-to-be-Royal, Meghan Markle.
The 25-year-old rising star of English tennis is most definitely a name to look out for in the next few years.
She’s currently performing exceptionally well in her mixed doubles game with Finland’s Henri Kontinen as her partner. The duo have made the Mixed Doubles Final in Wimbledon in 2 consecutive occasions - 2016 and 2017. Having won the former, the duo had no chance in 2017 where they were up against a resilient Jaime Murray and Martina Hingis. Maybe this year, she might want to work with either of the Murray brothers, at least we’ll get a preview of the royal couple stunt doubles playing competitive tennis. Plus it really sounds like a partnership that can produce results!
13 Not: Alize Cornet
I’ve always found the French 28-year-old to be an absolute stunner off and on the court. But sometimes the intensity of a match can take its toll on a player producing a cringe-worthy photo which can last forever. Cornet in all her front-hand glory is giving it all she’s got - bulging muscles and all! I can appreciate a woman who is strong and she knows it.
However Cornet is having a bit of a rough patch lately, especially since she has a pending court case.
The case is in regards to her many many missed competition substance tests which have spanned the last 12 months. I’ll be waiting with bated breathe to see the final verdict in a few months with the hearing set for March 2018. Fingers crossed that nothing bad happens. We really wouldn’t want to see Cornet away from any tennis tournaments.
12 Drool: Maria Sharapova
In my eyes, Maria Sharapova is the face of women’s tennis. Regardless of her recent past, the 30-year-old Russian has the charm of a potential Miss Universe. The former World Number One has been ranked the hottest athlete in the world for four consecutive years by Maxim magazine in 2006 and she was voted the seventh Most Eligible Bachelorette by Britain’s FHM magazine.
Throughout her career she’s been sponsored by various big name companies such as Motorola, Tag Heuer, Tiffany and the most prominent Nike, where she launched her own tennis apparel line in 2010. It was called the “Nike Maria Sharapova Collection.” After her recent failed drug’s test in 2016, personal sponsors Nike and TAG Heuer suspended their relationship with her. But of course it’s not all gloom and doom, because racquet manufacturer HEAD is still standing strong by Maria through this tough time. It won’t be long until she regains the admiration of everyone back again.
11 Not: Petra Kvitová
Petra Kvitová has been well known for her amazing left-handed groundstrokes and also her intelligent movement around the courts. In the past 7 years, she has won two Wimbledon titles in 2011 and 2014 tallying up to a total of 21 career singles titles which has lead to her achieving her highest career ranking of World Number 2 on 31 October, 2011.
However, she is currently ranked World Number 21 because of her absence during the Australian Open caused by an attack on her in her apartment in late 2016.
Kvitová was attacked by a man in his late 30s who lunged at her with a sharp knife. She sustained quite a number of lacerations to the tendons and nerves on her famous left hand and fingers while trying to defend herself. Unfortunately the assailant is still at large and she is still in physiotherapy trying to get herself back to 100. Here's wishing Kvitová a speedy recovery and a thunderous comeback!
10 Drool: Eugenie Bouchard
It really isn’t a surprise seeing Eugenie Bouchard taking up this high of a position on the drool list. The beauty signed a 3-year deal with Coca-Cola in 2014 and has all her equipment sponsored by Nike and Babolat. Even if her tennis hasn’t been much to speak about in the past couple of years, her smile and charisma are definitely what is keeping her in the tennis limelight. The former World Number 5 is an incredible sport both on and off the court and well-liked by many other players and fans alike.
Last year, she posted a bet on Twitter that the Atlanta Falcons would win Super Bowl and a fan named John Goehrke challenged the bet.
As we all know, the Falcons lost and Bouchard stayed true to her word and took John out to a basketball game at the Barclays Center. In a true show of the power of social media marketing, the NFL invited Bouchard and John to the Super Bowl as guests and they attended.
9 Not: Marion Bartoli
Marion Bartoli announced her retirement from tennis in 2013 during the Western & Southern Open after she complained about unbearable pain after playing for an hour. This announcement was made not long after she defeated Sabine Lisicki in the Wimbledon Ladies Singles 6-1, 6-4. Bartoli has always been known as a powerful player who uses both her hands on both the forehand and backhand strokes. It is said that she learnt this from her father who watched Monica Seles use the same method in a French Open Final in 1992.
Bartoli’s father was an influential figure in the early years of her career however she knew that she needs to be coached by a professional leading to a mutual separation from her father’s coaching. Bartoli was coached under Amélie Mauresmo when she won the Wimbledon title. Recently, Bartoli announced her return to the professional tour. She’s aiming to take part in the 2018 Miami Open in March.
8 Drool: Caroline Wozniacki
The Danish current world No 1 is known for her aggressive moves on the court and she’s been solidly coached by her father since she was in her teens. I know Wozniacki really is a beauty with her amazing smile and lovely sense of style but when she’s on the court it feels like she’s a whole new woman and it shows. She knows what her weapons are and she uses them swiftly with major damage to her opponents, one of them being her two-handed backhand.
Wozniacki has been the brand ambassador for Stella McCartney’s Adidas line, Babolat, Rolex and even Godiva chocolate.
One of my personal favourites moments of Wozniacki was watching her trying to smash her racket when she faced Samantha Stosur in the 2009 Eastbourne International. Classic Woz.
7 Not: Francesca Schiavone
If Gianluigi Buffon needed a female stunt double for any reason whatsoever, Francesca Schiavone would be the ideal replacement. The former World Number 4 has won 8 WTA singles titles which includes her 2010 triumph during the French Open against Samantha Stosur. She was really unlucky to not make it a double the next year as she lost to Li Na 4-6, 6-.
A fun fact about Schiavone - she rose up to fourth in the WTA standings after the 2011 Australian Open which made her the first Italian woman in history to achieve such a high ranking. She also holds the record for the longest Grand Slam female match in history after she defeated Svetlana Kuznetsova during that grand slam tournament fourth round 6-4,1-6,16-14. If you thought she was this excited in winning, you can only imagine the jubilation after the umpire called match!
6 Drool: Sabine Lisicki
Yup, Sabine Lisicki could probably knock out ANY man with her stunning looks, but also by the incredible strength of her serve. The 28-year-old German with a stunning smile averages a 120 mph serve and she holds the record for the fastest serve on the WTA circuit with a blinder at 131 mph beating the previous holder Venus Williams who was at 129 mph.
Ironically, Lisicki’s results on the grass circuits are very impressive considering how much she used to hate the grass in 2009. It turns out the Wimbledon finalist found out she was allergic to grass in 2013 leading her to turn to proper doctor-prescribed medication to cope and still play on grass-specific courts. Lisicki is fluent in English, Polish and German but drool-worthy in every language.
5 Not: Serena Williams
Serena Williams is an inspiration to all female tennis players all over the world. From her achievements both in the singles and doubles - Serena is a legend of the sport and even though she recently became a Mommy and had to take a break from the courts, we know that she’ll be back in no time!
Serena is currently sitting at number 2 on the on the all-time list of Most Grand Slam Singles Titles at 23.
She is only 1 shy from Margaret Court and you can bet that she is definitely aiming to beat that record… or surpass it completely! I know we have a mixture of views on whether Serena’s switch from beauty to beast-mode when crushing her opponent on the court and frankly I love her for it! She can pull off the stunning dinner outfit but when it comes down to the nitty gritty… she’s the G.O.A.T.
4 Drool: Victoria Azarenka
The 2-time Australian Open champion spearheads this article with her quirky style and gorgeous smile which could make any person in the world melt. She is also known for creating a shuffle or two after winning her matches on the women’s circuit and its no surprise that the shuffle maestro, Redfoo, took notice of this upcoming trend. The couple dated between 2012 and 2014 with Redfoo being in the player box during her 2013 triumph over Li Na in the Australian Open.
Fun Fact: RedFoo himself attempted to qualify for the 2013 US Open as a wild card entry. He lost his first match in the USTA Norther California Sectional qualifying tournament 6-1,6-2. I’d think its best to stick with the shuffle, Mr Party Rock! Ever since the breakup, Azarenka gave birth to a healthy baby boy and has won custody battle hearing. While Redfoo hasn’t been shaking.. I mean shuffling it up anywhere. Maybe he’s missing some Azarenka loving??
3 Not: Samantha Stosur
Stosur began playing tennis at the tender age of 8, after she received her first tennis racket as a Christmas present. However, it was Stosur’s brother who encouraged her parents to take her natural ease in the sport seriously leading to her joining the Queensland Academy of Sport in 1998.
Stosur played her first professional match the very next year losing in the first qualifying round of the Australian Open. Stosur has make a great and lasting impact in Women’s tennis to with point because of her attitude and style on the courts. She has a serve widely considered as one of the best seen on the women’s tour and is rated one of the fittest players on tour after bouncing back from a career-threatening lyme disease. Stosur believes in adapting to change to improve her game which she showed when she adopted Pat Rafter’s signature backhand slice to improve her weak backhand game.
2 Drool: Garbine Muguruza
When one goes, someone better is already waiting to take his place. This is the virtue I will always live by after any break-up and I’m using the same theory to get over Ivanovic with Garbine Muguruza. The Spanish-Venezuelan has won 2 Grand Slams ever since she turned pro in March 2012. Muguruza won the French Open in 2016 and also took the Wimbledon title in 2017 beating Serena and Venus Williams respectively.
She is a definite talent that would not just fill up her title cabinet but definitely the newsstands as well! Muguruza was named ambassador for Mazda Spain and BBVA bank in 2014 and she’s also sponsored by Adidas, Babolat and Rolex. In June 2017, the former world number 1 announced plans to help the NGO Room To Read organization increase awareness and impact for early grade literacy and equal access to secondary education for girls. I mean a beautiful humanitarian. I can already see little cupids just flying around my head. Ana Who??
1 Not: Agnieszka Radwanska
Another beautiful humanitarian is also Agnieszka Radwanska, the 28-year-old Polish player together with her sister Urszula constantly take time off to participate in various humanitarian projects such as the Habitat for Humanity, the house-building charity which provides a home for underprivileged families, the world over.
In 2013, Radwanska chose to pose for the cover of ESPN magazine leading to a widespread mix of responses including one extreme response by the Polish Catholic Youth Movement who banned the World Number 2 for what they described as “immoral behaviour”. Many of her fans applauded Radwanska for her bold and powerful statement calling it a brave move. Besides her hot magazine cover, Radwanska has also graced the cover of Shape magazine. Radwanska also has a roster of brands supporting her and paying her for that gorgeous face including Babolat, Lotto Sport Italia and even Lexus. The sky’s the limit for the former world number 2, plus she’s single….get in there, Boys!