Miami Sports

5 of Florida’s Best Tennis Players of All Time

Miami’s best tennis players have gone on to make waves internationally and locally, creating a niche for themselves

Tennis is one of the most competitive, elite sports in the world, and seeing as how Florida has been dubbed the tennis capital of the world, it comes as no surprise that some of the best tennis players are from Florida too.

Many of them have made a name for themselves in the world of international tennis and need to be celebrated, including:

Jay Berger

With a career-high singles ranking of no. 7 in the world, Berger has won three singles and one doubles title on the ATP Tour. He reached this incredible ranking in April 1990, soon after which he retired from pro-tennis due to chronic knee pain and injuries. Berger may have gone into early retirement, but he’s made a mark on the world of international tennis for a long time coming. Currently, he lives in Jupiter, Florida, raising his four kids with his wife.

Van Winitsky

Another Florida legend who made it to the world doubles no. 7 spot was Van Winitsky. He made it to no. 7 in 1983,  World No. 35 in singles in February 1984. Winitsky remains one of the most well-respected tennis players in US tennis, playing from a  young age at the Junior Wimbledon, Junior U.S. Open, and Junior National at Kalamazoo. Winitsky has shared the court with other legends such as John McEnroe and Brian Gottfried and many others who’ve shaped professional tennis in the US as we know it.

A tennis player holds up a Wilson tennis ball to the camera.

Anna Sergeyevna Kournikova

Although not originally from Miami, Anna Kournikova is another legend in the world of tennis. What’s interesting is that despite never having won a singles title, Kournikova went on to become world no. 8, as well as world no. 1 in doubles, as she and her partner Martina Hingis dominated multiple tournaments.

With a celebrity status due to her TV appearances and role in the public, she remains a popular icon not just within the professional sports sphere but also with general audiences. So much so that she became one of the most-searched-for names on Google at the pinnacle of her career. The Russian-born athlete now lives in Miami after retiring from pro tennis due to a back injury.

Lisa Raymond

Lisa Raymond is another player who wasn’t originally from Florida but is affiliated with the state in various capacities. She played for the University of Florida, becoming a champion in doubles tennis, and going on to acquire 11 Grand Slam titles.  She ranked no. 1 in world doubles in 2000 and on a total of five separate occasions during her career, which is quite a notable feat. In addition to her wins in pro-tennis, she has also won a bronze at the Olympic level, making her incredibly well-rounded in her achievements.

Nicole Arendt

Like Raymond, Arendt was also not originally from Florida but received an athletic scholarship to the state university here. In fact, she was also inducted into the  University of Florida Athletic Hall of Fame in 2001, two years before she graduated. She played for the NCAA and was a part of the Florida Gators women’s tennis team, eventually achieving a career-high doubles ranking of No. 3 in the world.

Miami has been home to some of the most talented athletes across various sports and specialties. You can check out our website for more news, updates, and information about these world-class players. Subscribe to our newsletter for sports news, politics, and much more.

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