Top Tennis Quotes: Victory, Humility, Championship, and Passion

Andre Agassi famously said, “In tennis, you’re on an island. Of all the games, men and women play, tennis is the closest to solitary confinement.”

Indeed, the top is a lonely place.

But, time and again, it is not always about the greatest tennis player of all time. Their words are all the more reason these men and women deserve respect.

Famous tennis quotes

Experience is a great advantage. The problem is that when you get the experience, you’re too damned old to do anything about it. ~ Jimmy Connors

Freed from the thoughts of winning, I instantly play better. I stop thinking; start feeling. My shots become a half-second quicker, my decisions become the product of instinct rather than logic. ~ Andre Agassi

I just try to play tennis and don’t find excuses. You know, I just lost because I lost, not because my arm was sore. ~ Goran Ivanisevic

I play each point like my life depends on it. ~ Rafael Nadal

It’s one-on-one out there, man. There ain’t no hiding. I can’t pass the ball. ~ Pete Sampras

If you can keep playing tennis when somebody is shooting a gun down the street, that’s concentration. ~ Serena Williams

I’m not afraid of anyone, but sometimes I’m afraid of myself. ~ Justine Henin

As a tennis player, you have to get used to losing every week. Unless you win the tournament, you always go home as a loser. But you have to take the positive out of a defeat and go back to work. Improve to fail better. ~ Stan Wawrinka

Losing is not my enemy, fear of losing is my enemy. ~ Rafael Nadal

Tennis is mostly mental. You win or lose the match before you even go out there. ~ Venus Williams

Tennis uses the language of life. Advantage, service, fault, break, love — the basic elements of tennis are those of everyday existence, because every match is a life in miniature. ~ Andre Agassi

If you don’t practice, you don’t deserve to win. ~ Andre Agassi

The mark of great sportsmen is not how good they are at their best, but how good they are at their worst. ~ Martina Navratilova

In tennis, it is not the opponent you fear, it is the failure itself, knowing how near you were but just out of reach. ~ Andy Murray

I enjoyed the position I was in as a tennis player. I was to blame when I lost. I was to blame when I won. And I really like that, because I played soccer a lot too, and I couldn’t stand it when I had to blame it on the goalkeeper. ~ Roger Federer

True heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic. It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost, but the urge to serve others at whatever cost. ~ Arthur Ashe

What is the single most important quality in a tennis champion? I would have to say desire, staying in there and winning matches when you are not playing that well. ~ John McEnroe

Since I don’t look like every other girl, it takes a while to be okay with that. To be different. But different is good. ~ Serena Williams

As a tennis player you can win and you can lose, and you have to be ready for both. I practised self-control as a kid. But as you get older they both – winning and losing – get easier. ~ Rafael Nadal

Luck has nothing to do with it, because I have spent many, many hours, countless hours, on the court working for my one moment in time, not knowing when it would come. ~ Serena Williams

You don’t have to be pretty for people to come and see you play. At the same time, if you’re a good athlete, it doesn’t mean you’re not a woman. ~ Martina Navratilova

You’ll hear a lot of applause in your life, but none will mean more to you than that applause from your peers. I hope each of you hears that at the end. ~ Andre Agassi

I’ve been playing against older and stronger competition my whole life. It has made me a better tennis player and able to play against this kind of level despite their strength and experience. ~ Maria Sharapova

I don’t mind fans coming up in a friendly, respectful way. That’s all part of the fun of being a top tennis player. But if people take pictures without permission, particularly if my children are in the shot, I feel uncomfortable. ~ Roger Federer

 

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Player Feature: Simona Halep

Full Name: Simona Halep 

Birthdate: September 27, 1991

Birthplace: Constanta, Romania 

Years active: 2006 – present

WTA Rank: #4

Key statistics

  • Known for aggressive baseline style
  • Has 19 singles titles
  • Makes 5x fewer errors than opponents
  • Gave Williams two of her worst defeats

Playing without a full-time coach, Simona Halep is an aggressive baseliner who can cover all surfaces. Halep plays right-handed (two-handed backhand). 

She named Justine Henin as one of her primary tennis models. Henin retorted by saying that Halep is an “intelligent game” who is both offensive and aggressive. She has uncanny anticipation and is astonishingly fast. Her strokes are unreadable, but she knows how to disrupt her opposition’s rhythm while disguising her own.

One vital component of Halep’s tennis strategy is her few errors. She always makes fewer errors against her opponents, at about 5x less. She seizes opportunities not to make any error due to her wide back swings and slides despite her small stature (Halep was only 5’6” and 132 lbs). She controls to rally and produces winners in the process without relying on the mistakes of her opponent.

Her agile all-court movement on the court is the end-result of her daily training. She exercises every day for one hour. Her usual regimen includes running, body weight, and resistance activities. She lifts a maximum of 2 kilograms. Halep is an occasional yoga practitioner as well. 

Her breakout season was in 2013. She won six titles against top 20 and top 10 tennis players. Halep was only second to Steffi Graf to do such who also won the same number of titles in 1986. Halep was named the Most Improved Player by the ESPN Center Court.

She became the #2 player in 2014 and ranked #1 twice between 2017 and 2019. The first one was on October 9, 2017, wherein she held the ranking for 16 weeks and again on 2019 for 48 consecutive weeks. Her 64-week #1 combined ranked her as the 10th in women’s tennis history. 

Halep is Wimbledon 2019’s women’s singles champion, outwitting Serena Williams in a two-sets-straight win. She gave Williams two of her worst defeats; first in 2014 WTA Finals by 6-0, 6-2 and in 2019 by 6-2, 6-2.

She won her Grand Slam titles for the first time in several years since she started playing professionally in 2006. She hasn’t won any Australian Open or US Open titles, but she won French Open in 2018 and her latest win, Wimbledon in 2019.

Halep was the second Romanian tennis player to win multiple majors. The first one was Ilie Nastase who won the US Open and French Open in 1972 and 1973, respectively. Nonetheless, she became the only Romanian player to bring home the Venus Rosewater Dish.

She has played almost 700 tennis matches with 19 singles titles and one doubles title. Halep has 486 wins and 207 losses. 

She has played in Africa, South America, Oceania, Asia, Europe, and North America. She was playing for about 14 years on tour. Halep has also played on clay, grass, carpet, indoor, outdoor, but her biggest accomplishments are on hard surfaces with 14 wins and six losses.

Romanian Tennis Federation manages Halep.

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