Tuesday, 14 December 2010
Advent calendar day 14 #12 Stefan Edberg
Day 14 of the countdown to the greatest player of all time.
Grand Slams won - 6
Grand Slam Finals lost - 5
Overall amount of singles titles won - 42
Overall Match Winning percentage - 74.91% (806-270)
Top rank - 1
Edberg was a brilliant junior player, becoming the first player to win the Junior season Grand Slam. In 1983, the year before he turned professional, he was immortalised in tennis but for a bad reason. The 17 year old hit a serve, which hit a linesman in the groin, the already off balance linesman, after trying to dodge the ball, fell and hit his head on the court, a week later he died in hospital. He would come close to retiring but continued to play and won 6 of 11 Grand Slam Finals. He won 3 of the four Grand Slam and once again failed to win the French Open, making 1 final, where he lost from 2 sets to one up and was later a break up in the final set. He never won more than one Grand Slam in a year but consistently made 2 Finals per year. His best year was probably 1992, where he won one Grand Slam and lost in the Final of another. Between 1990 and 1992 he was number 1 in the world for 72 weeks. He won the ATP World Tour Finals once and won a Gold medal in the 1984 Olympics but this was a demonstration event and therefore doesn't count. Four years later he would take a bronze medal in both singles and doubles. He is one of eight players to make the finals of all Grand Slams in open era. He played in 7 Davis Cup Finals for Sweden, winning 4 of them. His success maybe down to his consistency, playing in a then record 54 consecutive Grand Slams. His game was based around a strong serve and volley technique.