The 2012 U.S. Open is about to get underway as the tennis season nears the end of the U.S. Hard-Court Series. Serena Williams, currently ranked world No. 4, will be the favorite as the WTA tour moves to Flushing Meadows—where DecoTurf, has been in place since 1978.
In recent tennis history, undoubtedly, Martina Navratilova is best remembered for her outstanding play on grass courts. Chris Evert, on the other hand, could hardly lose when playing on clay. But both of these ladies played well on all surfaces, including hard courts.
Since the Open Era of tennis began, all of the women on this list are renowned for playing extremely well on a wide variety of hard courts.
Playing on artificial surfaces has impacted the game, especially physically for players in terms of injury and longevity. As the tennis calendar expands, adding more tournaments, we see players absent more on tour because of fatigue and injury.
The WTA statistics used to compile the list are available at the WTA website and through other WTA publications linked from there. The categories used for comparison were the nine most meaningful WTA records that tracked results accumulated by the players on hard courts.
The top 14 players included here were ranked against each other in each of the selected categories with points awarded from 1 to 14, depending on where the ranking fell.
With three-quarters of the tennis year played on hard courts, winning tournaments on this surface is critical to the success of the modern player.
To date, these are the best female hard court tennis players in the history of the sport.