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The Greatest Tennis Rivalries We All Went Gaga Over

Greatest Tennis Rivalries Ever
When it comes to sports, we all have our personal favorites. Tennis is no exception. And the fierce competition makes it all the more exciting. Over the years, some rivalries have stood out more than others.
Buzzle Staff
Last Updated: Jul 21, 2017
In 1972, the ITF replaced white balls with yellow ones to increase visibility.
Rafael Nadal - Roger Federer
This is arguably the best rivalry of the modern tennis era. Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have played each other in more than 30 matches, with Nadal having won almost ⅔ of these encounters. Federer has won 17 Grand Slams till date, with Nadal close behind on 14.
Roger Federer - Novak Djokovic
This is one of the most exciting rivalries ever, and an evenly matched one as well. Djokovic and Federer have battled more than 40 times, with an equal winning ratio. Federer heads the Grand Slam count with 17, while Djokovic is trying to catch up, with 10.
Rafael Nadal - Novak Djokovic
This rivalry is special, as Nadal and Djokovic have battled it out at all the 4 Grand Slam finals. They have played more than 40 matches against each other, and hold the record for the longest match in a Grand Slam final in the open era. While Djokovic has won 10 Grand Slams, Nadal is ahead with 14.
Maria Sharapova - Serena Williams
The Sharapova-Williams rivalry is one of the best in modern women's tennis, but surprisingly a pretty one-sided affair. Serena has defeated Sharapova almost 90% of times that they met. She even leads the Grand Slam count at 21, while Sharapova lags way behind at just 5.
Serena Williams - Venus Williams
Though Serena Williams is considered to be one of the greatest tennis players, her sister is not too far behind. The rivalry between these siblings is as fierce as it gets, but off the court, they are as close as can be. They have met more than 25 times in their career, and have even played four consecutive Grand Slam finals. Serena has the better Grand Slam record at 21, while Venus stands at 7.
Chris Evert - Martina Navratilova
Arguably the greatest rivalry in women's tennis history, Evert and Navratilova have encountered each other in around 80 matches. Navratilova heads the tally, albeit with a very small margin, but both stand on the same pedestal when it comes to Grand Slam wins, with a cool 18 titles each.
Ivan Lendl - Jimmy Connors
Ivan Lendl and Jimmy Connors battled it out nearly 40 times, with Lendl winning more than ⅔ of them. Though, they are on par with 8 Grand Slams each.
Ken Rosewall - Rod Laver
This pre-open era rivalry was a friendly one between these two Australians. They played more than 140 matches against each other, with Laver having the upper hand in most. He won 11 Grand Slams, while Rosewall finished a little behind on 8.
Arthur Ashe - Tom Okker
Arthur Ashe won around ⅔ of the matches that he played against Tom Okker. Ashe won 3 Grand Slams, and was the first African-American to win a Grand Slam singles title. Sadly, Okker never managed to win a single Grand Slam title.
Bjorn Borg - John McEnroe
Whenever the fiery McEnroe clashed with the cool Borg, the encounters were bound to be exciting. They played 14 matches with an equal head-to-head count. McEnroe won 7 Grand Slams, while Borg pocketed a cool 11.
Justine Henin - Kim Clijsters
Both these Belgians battled it out in more than twenty matches, and ended their careers with almost equal honors. But when it came to Grand Slams, Henin won 7, while Clijsters had only 4 titles to her name.
Margaret Court - Billie Jean King
Margaret Court and Billie Jean King battled each other in more than 30 matches. Court won around ⅔ of their encounters, with an amazing 24 majors to her name. King was pretty impressive too, with 12 majors.
Martina Hingis - Lindsay Davenport
Hingis and Davenport fought it out in more than 20 matches, but Davenport had a slightly better record among the two. When it came to Grand Slams, Hingis led the way with 5, with Davenport close behind on 3.
Pete Sampras - Andre Agassi
With more than 30 encounters, this rivalry is one of the most interesting of the open era. Sampras always had the upper hand, and led the Grand Slam count with 14, while Agassi finished slightly behind on 8.
Stefan Edberg - Boris Becker
Edberg and Becker both won an equal number of Grand Slams - 6 each. But when it came to battling against each other, Becker had an upper hand in more than ⅔ of the encounters.
Steffi Graf - Monica Seles
This again was one of the greatest tennis rivalries of all time. Steffi Graf had the upper hand most of the time, winning ⅔ of their meetings. She even led the Grand Slam count with 22, while Seles managed 9 major titles.