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Australian Open 2012: 20 Best Women's Competitors in Tournament History

Delores Smith-JohnsonCorrespondent IIIJanuary 19, 2012

Australian Open 2012: 20 Best Women's Competitors in Tournament History

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    The Australian Open has seen many champions come and go since the first tournament was held for men in 1905. The first women's tournament was held 17 years later in 1922.

    The Australian Open was initially called the Australasian Open, named after the founding organization, the Lawn Tennis Association of Australasia. Later it became known as the Australian Championships (pre-Open Era) and was eventually renamed the Australian Open.

    Over the years, many champions have graced the courts of Melbourne Park.

    This slideshow will take a look at the top 20 women competitors. By using the term "competitors," it broadens the category to include those women who may not have numerous championships, but their tenacity and skill on the courts of the Australian Open deserves recognition.

    Because there are so many great women who have competed at the Australian Open, there's no doubt there will be women who do not make the list. It's by no means any disrespect to their accomplishments.

    Do feel free to share your thoughts on the women listed as well as other competitors who you feel deserve to be recognized.

    Enjoy the read and thank you in advance for your comments and feedback.

     

    Note: The data provided is through 2011. It does not include 2012 Australian Open results for those women competing this year.

Dianne Fromholtz Balestrat

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    Country: Australia

    Australian Open Matches Played: 52

    Australian Open Matches Won: 28

    Winning Percentage (based on aforementioned variables): 54 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Quarterfinals (1973)

    Best Doubles Performance: Champion (1977)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Quarterfinals (1987 and 1988)



Nell Hall Hopman

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    Country: Australia

    Australian Open Matches Played: 134

    Australian Open Matches Won: 82

    Winning Percentage: 61 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Final (1939 and 1947)

    Best Doubles Performance: Final (1940 and 1955)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Won (1939; partner was none other than her husband Harry Hopman, for whom the Hopman Tournament is named for)


Jan LeHane O'Neill

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    Country: Australia

    Australian Open Matches Played: 88

    Australian Open Matches Won: 60

    Winning Percentage: 68 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Final (1960, 1961 and 1963)

    Best Doubles Performance: Final (1961 and 1963)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Won (1960 and 1961)


Monica Seles

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    Country: Yugoslavia and the United States

    Australian Open Matches Played: 34

    Australian Open Matches Won: 28

    Winning Percentage: 76 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (1991, 1992, 1993 and 1996)

    Best Doubles Performance: Semifinals (1991 and 2001)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: N/A


Jennifer Capriati

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    Country: United States

    Australian Open Matches Played: 43

    Australian Open Matches Won: 33

    Winning Percentage: 77 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (2001 and 2002)

    Best Doubles Performance: Third Round (2000)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Second Round (1997)


Mary Joe Fernandez

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    Country: United States

    Australian Open Matches Played: 103

    Australian Open Matches Won: 80

    Winning Percentage: 78 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Final (1990 and 1992)

    Best Doubles Performance: Won (1991)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Quarterfinals (1994 and 1995)


Lindsay Davenport

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    Country: United States

    Australian Open Matches Played: 139

    Australian Open Matches Won: 110

    Winning Percentage: 79 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (2000)

    Best Doubles Performance: Final (1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001 and 2005)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Semifinals (1995)


Kim Clijsters

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    Country: Belgium

    Australian Open Matches Played: 57

    Australian Open Matches Won: 45

    Winning Percentage: 79 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (2011)

    Best Doubles Performance: Quarterfinals (2003)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: N/A


Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario

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    Country: Spain

    Australian Open Matches Played: 124

    Australian Open Matches Won: 101

    Winning Percentage (based on aforementioned variables): 81 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Final (1994 and 1995)

    Best Doubles Performance: Won (1992, 1995 and 1996)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Won (1992 and 1993)


Billie Jean King

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    Country: United States

    Australian Open Matches Played: 37

    Australian Open Matches Won: 30

    Winning Percentage: 81 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (1968)

    Best Doubles Performance: Final (1969)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Won (1968)


Steffi Graf

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    Country: Germany

    Australian Open Matches Played: 44

    Australian Open Matches Won: 35

    Winning Percentage: 82 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (1988, 1989, 1990 and 1994)

    Best Doubles Performance: Semifinals (1988 and 1989)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Second Round (1991)


Evonne Goolagong Cawley

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    Country: Australia

    Australian Open Matches Played: 80

    Australian Open Matches Won: 66

    Winning Percentage: 83 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (1974, 1975, 1976 and 1977)

    Best Doubles Performance: Won (1971, 1974, 1975 and 1976)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: N/A


Thelma Coyne Long

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    Country: Australia

    Australian Open Matches Played: 92

    Australian Open Matches Won: 76

    Winning Percentage: 83 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (1952 and 1954)

    Best Doubles Performance: Won (1947, 1948, 1949, 1951, 1952, 1956, 1958)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Won (1951, 1952, 1954 and 1955)


Chris Evert

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    Country: United States

    Australian Open Matches Played: 49

    Australian Open Matches Won: 41

    Winning Percentage: 84 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (1982 and 1984)

    Best Doubles Performance: Final (1988)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: N/A


Serena Williams

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    Country: United States

    Australian Open Matches Played: 100

    Australian Open Matches Won: 88

    Winning Percentage: 88 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (2003, 2005, 2007, 2009 and 2010)

    Best Doubles Performance: Won (2001, 2003, 2009 and 2010)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Final (1999)


Martina Navratilova

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    Country: United States and Czechoslovakia (Czech Republic now)

    Australian Open Matches Played: 118

    Australian Open Matches Won: 105

    Winning Percentage: 88 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (1981, 1983 and 1985)

    Best Doubles Performance: Won (1980, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1987, 1988 and 1989)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Won (2003)


Martina Hingis

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    Country: Switzerland

    Australian Open Matches Played: 103

    Australian Open Matches Won: 91

    Winning Percentage: 88 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (1997, 1998 and 1999)

    Best Doubles Performance: Won (1997, 1998, 1999 and 2002)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Won (2006)


Nancye Wynne Bolton

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    Country: Australia

    Australian Open Matches Played: 58

    Australian Open Matches Won: 52

    Winning Percentage: 90 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (1946, 1947, 1948 and 1951)

    Best Doubles Performance: Won (1947, 1948, 1949, 1951 and 1952)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Won (1946, 1947 and 1948)


Daphne Akhurst

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    Country: Australia

    Australian Open Matches Played: 53

    Australian Open Matches Won: 48

    Winning Percentage: 91 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (1925, 1926, 1928, 1929 and 1930)

    Best Doubles Performance: Won (1924, 1925, 1928 and 1929)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Won (1924, 1925, 1928 and 1929)

     

    Noteworthy fact: Akhurst's doubles and mixed doubles records were a carbon copy of each other, including reaching the finals in 1926 and the semifinals in 1930.


Margaret Smith Court

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    Country: Australia

    Australian Open Matches Played: 138

    Australian Open Matches Won: 127

    Winning Percentage: 92 percent

     

    Best Singles Performance: Won (1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1969, 1970, 1971 and 1973)

    Best Doubles Performance: Won (1961, 1962, 1963, 1965, 1969, 1970, 1971 and 1973)

    Best Mixed Doubles Performance: Won (1963 and 1964)

     

    It seems only fitting that the greatest women's competitor at the Australian Open is a native daughter for which one of the most recognized arenas at Melbourne Park is named for.


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