Top Australian Tennis Players

Written by: Aidan Clarke

|

|

Time to read 6 min

Australia has been lucky enough to enjoy some incredibly talented tennis players in its history. With stars ranging from Rod Laver to Ashleigh Barty, it's no wonder that Australian players are the third most successful in grand slam events.

With the Australian Open descending upon Melbourne once again, we thought it would be fitting to run through the greatest Australian tennis players of all time. For all the details on when to catch these stars in action, check out the Australian open tennis dates.

Tennis Legends of the Past

Rod Laver - The Grand Slam Titan

Rod Laver is widely considered one of the greatest tennis players of all time. He holds the distinction of winning 11 grand slam singles titles and completing the fabled grand slam (winning all four slams in a calendar year) not once but twice.


Rod Laver is a living legend in Australian tennis and was honoured by having the famous Rod Laver Arena named after him in 2000.

Margaret Court - Grand Slam Record Holder

Margaret Smith Court boasts one of the most impressive resumes in all of tennis history. In her incredible career, she won 64 major titles, including 19 women's doubles titles, 21 mixed doubles titles and 24 singles titles. As of the beginning of the 2024 Australian Open, she ties Novak Djokovic for the most singles grand slams in history.


Margaret Court is widely considered to be the greatest female tennis player of all time, and she was honoured in 2003 when Margaret Court arena was named to honour her astonishing achievements. Her legacy has made her a headliner in the international tennis hall of fame.

Evonne Goolagong - A Versatile Champion

Evonne Goolagong left an indelible mark on the tennis world in her incredible career. Known for her graceful and diverse playing style, she was adept at playing across various surfaces. Goolagong won an impressive four Australian Open titles, one French Open and Wimbledon twice.


Goolagong is of Aboriginal descent, and her success helped break down racial and cultural barriers. She remains an important figure in promoting diversity and inclusion in the sport.

Lleyton Hewitt - No. 1 in the World

Lleyton Hewitt became one of the most well known names in Australian sport for his tenacity, aggressive playing style, and rise to the number 1 ranking in the tennis world. He was admired for his intense playing style, possessing an ability to return seemingly impossible shots.


Hewitt won two grand slam titles during his career and also played a key role in two winning Davis Cup teams.

Patrick Rafter - Two-Time US Open Winner

Pat Rafter is another classic name is Australian sporting folklore. Rafter is remembered for his proficiency on grass courts, serve-and-volley style of play, and sportsmanship on the court.


His most notable accomplishments were back-to-back US Open Victories in 1997 and 1998, but Rafter was also a skilled doubles player, securing multiple doubles titles throughout his career. After retiring from professional tennis, he remained involved in the sport and took on roles such as Australia's Davis Cup captain.

Modern Titans

Ashleigh Barty - Reigning Champion

Ash Barty quickly became a household name with a short but stunning career. In a remarkably brief period, Barty achieved world No. 1. status, captured three grand slams, and a major doubles championship.


Ash Barty shocked the world by announcing her retirement in 2022, leaving us to imagine the multiple trophies she could have stacked up over a long career. Still, her legacy as one of the best female tennis players of all time is firmly etched in history.

Nick Kyrgios - The Maverick

Nick Kyrgios is one of tennis's biggest personalities, equally famous for both his talent with the racquet and on-court theatrics. Kyrgios can be fiery on the court and possesses a flair for showmanship, earning himself a cult following amongst Australian fans.


His most notable achievements to date include seven ATP Tour singles titles, including both the 2019 and 2022 Washington Open, and most notably reaching the final of the 2022 Wimbledon Championships.

Alex de Minaur - The Demon's Rise

Alex de Minaur, or 'The Demon' as fans have christened him, made a rapid descent in the tennis world and seems destined to rise even higher. As of this article, he is currently the no. 10 ranked men's singles player in the world.


While the ultimate grand slam success hasn't been reached, the demon looks poised to make a serious push for glory in the foreseeable future. Alex de Minaur remains one of the most exciting prospects in Australian tennis.

Mark Philippoussis - The Big Server

Mark Philippoussis is a fan favourite with a career that spanned from the early 1990s into the mid-2000s. His powerful serve made him a fearsome opponent on the tennis court, able to consistently deliver serves at incredibly high speeds.


With his aggressive playing style, Philippoussis reached two grand slam finals and helped Australia capture the Davis Cup in 1999. Although faced with multiple setbacks through injury, Philippoussis showed remarkable resiliency through multiple comebacks.

Sam Groth - The Fastest Serve in History (H3)

Sam Groth etched his name into the history books by setting the record for the fastest serve in history. At the 2012 Busan Open in South Korea, he dished a serve at a blistering 263km/h (163.4mph). Both his powerful serve and aggressive play style made Groth a challenging opponent on the court.


While Groth never reached the later stages of Grand Slam tournaments, he competed in the main draws of several Grand Slam events, showcasing his impressive skills on the big stage.

Bernard Tomic - Controversial Talent

Bernard Tomic is a controversial figure who has nonetheless earned a place in Australian tennis history. Tomic gained recognition at an early age, winning the Australian Open junior title in 2008. He won several ATP singles titles in his career, but his biggest achievement was probably his remarkable run at Wimbledon in 2008, making it to the quarter final.


Tomic's behaviour has also become a part of his legacy. He was known for his controversial statements and actions, including public spats with tennis authorities and criticisms of his own performance.

Rising Stars

Alexei Popyrin - Young and Promising

Alexei Popyrin made a stunning run to the third round of last year's grand slam at Melbourne Park, turning heads and earning himself some new fans. He is unseeded and ranked world no. 43, hoping to make some waves again at this year's Australian Open.

Thanasi Kokkinakis - Overcoming Challenges

Thanasi Kokkinakis captured Australia's hearts with a memorable doubles championship win alongside Nick Kyrgios in 2022. Kokkinakis recently hit a career-high 65th in the ATP world rankings.

Ajla Tomljanovic - International Representation

While Ajla Tomljanovic hasn't played much tennis in the last year, slipping to 275th in the WTA world rankings, she possesses some big match experience. She made the quarter-finals at both Wimbledon and the US Open in 2022, giving her confidence that she can make a deep run in this year's Australian Open.

Daria Saville - International Journey

Daria Saville was once a top 20 player, but a raptured ACL in September 2022 put a pause on her promising career. She's worked hard to improve her rankings ever since, bouncing back from a career-low No.322 rank to being awarded a wildcard entry by Tennis Australia.


Saville previously reached the fourth round of the Australian Open in 2016 and 2017.

Conclusion

Australia's ongoing legacy in tennis stands as a testament to the nation's sporting prowess and spirit. From the iconic Rod Laver to the brilliance of Ash Barty, Australian players have consistently showed skill, determination, and excellence on the global stage.


As the Australian Open descends upon us once again, it's not just about appreciating the legends and emerging talent but also about embracing the event's vibrant atmosphere. Check out our guide on Australian open fashion to ensure you're stylishly prepared for one of the biggest tennis tournaments in the world.


As Australia continues to produce icons of the game, its reputation as one of the great tennis nations remains firmly in place.

Woman playing tennis

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is the highest-ranked male Australian tennis player?

Alex de Minaur is currently the highest-ranked male Australian tennis player. As of the publication of this article, he is ranked no. 10 in men's singles competition.

Who are the Australian men tennis players in 2024?

The Australian men tennis players competing in the 2024 Australian open are Alex de Minaur, Alexei Popyrin, Max Purcell, Jordan Thompson, Aleksander Vukic, Thanasi Kokkinakis, Christopher O'Connell, Rinky Hijikata, James Duckworth, Marc Polmans, Adam Walton, Jason Kubler, James McCabe, Omar Jasika, and Dane Sweeny.

Who is the retired Australian tennis player female?

The recently retired Australian female tennis player is Ashleigh Barty, who stunned the word in 2022 when she ended her incredible career at just 25 years old. Barty retired as a three time grand slam winner and earned a remarkable reputation in her relatively short career.

Where is Nick Kyrgios ranked?

As of this article, Nick Kyrgios is currently unranked after missing significant playing time through injury. Kyrgios has experienced wrist and knee issues which saw him play just one match in 2023.