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Most Influential Tennis Players
Wednesday, 01/29/2020
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Tennis is an ever-evolving sport, and over the years, it has created players who have gone to influence the way we look at the sport, how the sport should be played, and how we define athletes in general. It’s a sport that grows in the hearts of spectators – the longevity of players in their prime gives you a long run of entertainment, and you usually get to have the next stars born before the current ones retire.

Being a sports fans love so much, it’s no surprise to see bookmakers roll out betting odds on major fixtures allowing fans to back their favorites with money. Websites like are known for working with top-level sports books that feature tennis betting options in their platforms.

Top 5 Most Influential Players in Tennis History
There are world-class tennis players, and there are world-class tennis players who made an impact on and off the court. The latter are those involved in shaping the game into what tennis players and fans currently enjoy. Let’s look at a couple of them and their impact on the sport.

Billie Jean King 
When mentioning influential tennis players, it’ll be a crime not to have King in the conversation. She had inspired female athletes since the 1970s – her efforts were key to bringing women’s tennis to the limelight.

In 1943, she won Bobby Riggs in the ‘Battle of the Sexes,’ an event demonstrating that professional women’s tennis should be taken seriously just like men’s. She and some of her friends founded the Women’s Tennis Association, a body for officiating female tennis, and the Women’s Sports Foundation. This organization helps women with resources to get involved in professional sports. In 2020, the famous Federation Cup was renamed to the Billie Jean King Cup to honor her legacy – making her one of the most powerful personnel in tennis of all time.

John McEnroe 
While others deliberately take actions off the court to influence areas in the game where they see flaws, John McEnroe’s influence came from his reactions while on the court. He was known for his outbursts of rage when umpires gave a false call against him. Over his years of activeness, line-calling technology had to be upgraded; we can say his outburst was among the catalysts that brought the quick advancement of line-calling technology. 
Also, he played a major role in the switch from wooden racquets in the 1970s and helped bring Nike to the limelight as a sportswear designing company.

Li Na 
Li Na was the first Chinese player to win a pro title – her performance showed other aspiring tennisers in China that the sport can be lucrative for them, too, if they put in the work. Today, China has got multiple world-class players thriving in the sport.
She’s known for her frequent quarrels with government sports programs and intriguing tattoos. Being inspired by Andre Agassi, it’s not surprising to see her achieve this success on and off the court. In 2013, she was featured in the list of 100 most influential people of the year.

Venus & Serena Williams 
The Williams sister are arguably the most influential duo in modern-day tennis and sports in general. They changed the game's culture with their charisma, bringing a new style of eye-popping outfits that are being copied by many female tennis players of today.

Venus, in particular, was a large advocate of equal-price money for both male and female categories. She was victorious in 2007 as Wimbledon revised their prize amounts for women to match their male counterparts. Both sisters occupy the top two spots for all-time career earnings – Serena first and Venus second.

Roger Federer 
Federer is one of the most iconic tennis players in history. The Swiss player’s attitude has been immaculate on and off the court, making him arguably the most charismatic player in tennis history. While most tennis stars speak like they’re quoting a prewritten speech, Federer seems to be a spokesperson at heart – he’s someone that the world listens to when he talks, whether about the sport or athletics in general. We won’t be surprised to see him getting invited as a speaker in tennis events after his retirement.