We finish the count down with the incredible Rod Laver, who dominated the tennis world in the 1960s. He won 11 Grand Slams in 17 Finals. Rod Laver was the third of seven male tennis players to complete the career grand Slam. He made his first Grand Slam Final in 1959 at Wimbledon and won his first Grand Slam in 1960, at the age of 22, at the Australian Open, he then won Wimbledon the next year. One year later, in 1962, he completed the career Grand Slam, with titles at the French Open and US Open, but in 1962 he didn't just finish the career Grand Slam he became the second male player to complete a season Grand Slam, after Don Budge, and the last player to do this. In addition to the 4 Grand Slams he won 18 other titles, a record. At the end of this dream year, he left to the pro-slam tour. Every year there are only 3 pro-slams and he played 15 in his 5 years, making the Final of 14 of them and winning 8 of them, including winning all three pro-slams in his last year on the pro-slam tour. In 1968 he returned to playing Grand Slams, due to the emergence of Open era. In his first Grand Slam back, at the French Open he lost in the final but won Wimbledon that year. In his second year back he did the Season Grand Slam for a second time, he is the only player to ever do this. After this he seemed to lose his grip on Grand Slams and played just 5 Grand Slams in the next 3 years and 3 more after that in the next 5 years, until he played in his last Grand Slam in 1977 and retired in 1979. At the Australian Open he won 3 titles in 4 Finals, after having 9 attempts. At the French Open he won 2 titles in 3 Finals and 8 attempts. At Wimbledon he won 4 times in 6 Finals and 10 tries. And finally at the US Open twice in 4 Finals and 12 attempts. He would have almost certainly won more Grand Slam titles if he hadn't gone to the pro-slam tour for 5 years. In 1963 he was ranked world number two, then for the next 7 years after this he was ranked world number 1, until 1970, his last year as number 1. He won an amazing 199 titles in his career, including his titles won on the pro-slam tour, this is a record. Between 1961 and 1970, he won more than titles each of those years, except 1963. In 1962 he won 22 titles, a record, and in 1969 he won 18 titles, an open era record. He helped Australia win the Davis Cup for four consecutive times between 1959 and 1962 as well as in 1973. Rod Laver used an effective serve and volley game, equipped with powerful ground strokes to dominate the grass courts, which most Grand Slams were played on. He was brilliant at running down balls and was agile and quick. To conclude I think Rod Laver's great achievements has made him famous and has gotten him to the top of the count down, even when missing 5 years of Grand Slams, he still had a large haul and still was dominating the pro-slam tour.
I thank all readers for following this advent calendar and hope you all have a great Christmas.