Ranking 6th on our list is the Canadian Milos Raonic. Once ranked number 3 in the world, Milos has seen his ranking fall in recent years due to suffering many injuries. Regardless of that, Milos has beaten the best of the best including a remarkable win against Roger Federer in the Semi Finals at Wimbledon in 2016. Milos would end up finishing runner-up to Andy Murray.
In addition to being runner-up at Wimbledon in 2016, Milos has also fallen at the last hurdle at Queens’ London, losing to Murray once again, and losing to Federer at the Stuttgart Open in 2018.
Narrowly missing out on being placed in the top 5 of our grass court players is a player who first entered the world’s top 10 on January 27, 2014 and hasn’t fallen out of the top 10 since. Simona Halep, currently ranked number 2 in the world, lifted her 2nd WTA Title on the grass courts in the The Netherlands, defeating Kirstin Flipkins in straight sets.
Simona has seen her grass court game flourish ever since, defeating the 7 time Wimbledon Champion Serena Williams in the Final at Wimbledon in 2019 by a score line of 6 2, 6 2.
The players ranked 7 on our list of top 10 grass court players are both 2 time champions on the grass courts at Eastbourne, England.
The holder of 7 ATP Singles Titles is ranked 7th on our list. The Spaniard Feliciano Lopez plays his best tennis on the grass courts of England, with wins over multiple Grand Slam Champions including Rafael Nadal, Stan Wawrinka, Marin Cilic, Andy Roddick and Marat Safin.
In addition to wins over the elite, Lopez is a 3 time Quarter-Finalist at Wimbledon, a 2 time champion at Eastbourne and a 2 time champion at Queens’ London. It is yet to be determined if Feliciano will continue to play, with the news of a new born on the way. Here’s hoping he will continue to bring his ‘A Game’ to the grass courts once more.
Appearing 7th on our list is the current World #3 and former World #1, Karolina Pliskova. Pliskova first tasted success on the lawn courts of Birmingham in 2015 where she fell at the last hurdle, losing to Angelique Kerber in 3 sets. A year later, Pliskova would go one step further and win the title in Nottingham. Pliskova is also a 3 time finalist at Eastbourne, lifting the trophy on 2 occasions.
Although Pliskova has never made it past the 4th round at Wimbledon, it is just a matter of time before the WTA Tours’ leading ace holder delves further into the draw.
Both of the players ranked 8th on our list are former top 10 players and have reached the Semi Finals at Wimbledon!
Up next on our list of top 10 grass court players, is the American John Isner. Standing tall at 6ft 10, Isner’s biggest strength is his serve, which is often the deciding factor in a match played on grass. Isner’s best performance at a grand slam, has been at Wimbledon, when he reached the Semi Finals in 2018. Isner has had repeated success on the grass courts at the Hall of Fame Open in Newport, Rhode Island where he has won the title on 4 occasions.
Isner has many accolades to his name, including participating in the 2 longest professional matches ever played, defeating Mahut 70-68 in the 5th set at Wimbledon in 2010, and losing to Anderson 24-26 in the 5th set in 2018. As a result of his matches lasting a significant amount of time, Wimbledon have introduced a 5th set tie-breaker to be played once it reaches 12 games all.
Hailing from Sydney, Australia, but now representing Great Britain, Johanna Konta appears 8th on our list of top 10 grass court players. Konta has accumulated plenty of notches on her belt, with wins on the grass courts over former Wimbledon champions including Kerber, Kvitova and Halep.
Although Konta has yet to win a grass court title, she is Great Britain’s best chance of lifting the Ladies Wimbledon Singles Trophy, as she has experienced a significant amount of success on the grass courts of England, with runner up finishing’s at Nottingham in 2017 & 2018 (losing both finals in 3 sets) and being a Semi Finalist at Wimbledon in 2017.
Appearing just ahead of his French compatriot Richard Gasquet, Nicolas Mahut is ranked 9 on our list of grass court specialists. Mahut may be most known for the part he played in the longest match ever recorded, losing to John Isner in the first round at Wimbledon in 2010. Although Mahut is currently hovering around the 200 rank in the world, he has a fully stacked grass court resume including wins over Nadal and Murray at Queens’ London and Wawrinka on the grass courts in The Netherlands.
Currently aged 38, Mahut has played in 6 career ATP single finals, and all have been on grass, winning 3 Rosmalen Championships in The Netherlands (2013, 2015 & 2016) and winning the Hall of Fame Open in Newport, Rhode Island in 2013. Mahut has also lifted the Wimbledon Double’s title in 2016 & was runner up in 2019. Although the majority of his competitors have age and fitness on their side, Mahut’s experience on the grass is a force to be reckoned with to this day.
WTA #9 CoCo Vandeweghe
The former top 10 ranked WTA Player, CoCo Vandeweghe finds herself earning the 9th berth on our countdown. Currently ranked just outside the top 200 in the world as a result of sustaining an ankle injury which has kept her out of action for the guts of a year. CoCo has won 2 titles on the grass courts in The Netherlands, lifting the Rosmalen Championship trophy in 2016 and 2018.
With wins over a handful of top 10 players on the grass courts, such as Radwanska, Wozniacki and Johanna Konta, Coco has found her serve to be her main asset, which often is the deciding weapon on the grass courts. If CoCo can overcome her ankle injury, she is sure to be an unwanted opponent for many seeded players who could face her in the opening rounds of forthcoming tournaments.
As Covid-19 has disrupted the 2020 Grass court season, The Tennis Tribune will be dedicating the next fortnight to the tours’ grass court specialists. Commencing today, we will be revealing who is ranked 10th in our top 10 list. Read below to find out who have earned themselves a berth in our competitive list of grass court players.
ATP #10 Grass court specialist
Kicking off our top 10 ranked grass court specialists is the former top 10 ranked French veteran, Richard Gasquet. Gasquet who is currently ranked 50 in the world (Career high ranking 7) has achieved a considerable amount of success on the green turf. With 3 grass court titles to his name including back to back wins in Nottingham in 2005 & 2006, and most recently lifting the title at the Rosmalen Championships in The Netherlands in 2018. Gasquet who is probably most known for one of the best single handed backhands on the tour, has clocked up his most grand slam match wins at Wimbledon, reaching the second week on 7 occasions, including reaching the semi-finals in 2007 and 2015.
Although Gasquet may have had his best years behind him, most recently falling at the first hurdle at Wimbledon for the last 3 years, one can never count out the skilled grass court craftsmen! With wins over Andy Roddick and Stan Wawrinka at Wimbledon, Gasquet is sure to be a player that many will fear to play, and for that reason alone, Gasquet deserves a place in the top 10 list.
WTA #10 Grass court specialist
Commencing our list of top 10 WTA Grass court players, is the young Croatian Donna Vekic. Vekic made her professional debut on the WTA tour during 2012, and quickly became a fan favourite for many. Vekic first encountered success on the English grass reaching the final on her first attempt at the Aegon Classic in Birmingham in 2013, defeating 3 seeded players before succumbing to Daniela Hantuchova in a tight two set final (6 7, 4 6). Vekic would later go on to achieve more success by adding the Aegon International tour in Nottingham as an annual event to her calendar. Vekic lifted the title in 2017, defeating Johanna Konta, and was most recently a runner up to Caroline Garcia in 2019.
Her best performance at Wimbledon thus far, is a 4th round showing in 2018, defeating the 2017 US Open Champion, Sloane Stephens in the 1st round. Vekic currently aged 23, has her best tennis ahead of her and is a main contender to lift the Wimbledon title over the next few years.